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U.S. commercial property/casualty insurance rates rose 2% on average in the first quarter of 2019, with commercial auto lines continuing to lead rate increases, online insurance exchange MarketScout Corp. said Friday.
“Auto continues to be assessed the most aggressive rate increase by line of coverage at plus 7 percent,” MarketScout CEO Richard Kerr said in a statement.
“Also, energy exposures are now starting to see more rate increases. Otherwise the commercial market is stable,” Mr. Kerr said.
Commercial property rates increased by 2.5%, while rates for business interruption, businessowners policy, inland marine, general liability, umbrella/excess and professional liability lines increased by 2% in the quarter, according to the MarketScout statement.
All other lines tracked by Dallas-based MarketScout saw smaller increases, except for surety, where rates were flat, and workers compensation, where rates fell 1%.
By industry class, transportation saw the steepest increase of 4%, according to MarketScout. Habitational saw increases of 3% in the first quarter, while energy and manufacturing saw increases of 2.5%.
Small accounts — those with up to $25,000 in premium — saw a 2.5% rate hike in the first quarter, while medium accounts — those with $25,001 to $250,000 in premium — were up 2%. Large accounts — those with $250,001 to $1 million in premium — were up 1%, as were jumbo accounts, which have more than $1 million in premium.
U.K.-based consultancy firm Peel Hunt L.L.P. said that reinsurance prices would rise this year, driven by factors related to increasing claim volumes and waning profits, Artemis.bm reports. Analysts at Peel Hunt said that insurance-linked securities funds sought rate increases at the January renewals and are likely to continue to achieve higher prices this year.