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Property outlook stable; liability lines challenging: USI


Commercial property insurance policyholders with good loss records will likely see flat renewals to 10% increases for the remainder of this year, but the liability rating environment will likely remain tougher, according to USI Insurance Services LLC.

In a report issued Tuesday, the brokerage said property rates are finally stabilizing.

“After the most challenging property insurance market in decades, 2024 is proving to be a more stable and capitalized market. Although some pockets of disruption still exist,” the report said.

Accounts with poor loss experience will likely see rates increase by 10% to 20% in the remainder of 2024, compared with 15% to 30% in the first half of the year. Property rates have been rising since 2018, and buyers saw significant rate hikes last year.

General liability rates are flattening in some sectors, but real estate and habitational risks remain challenging.

“The focus on assault and battery exposures contributes to these sectors’ challenges,” the report said.

Average primary general and product liability rates are expected to increase by 5% to 10% for the remainder of the year. Umbrella and excess liability rates will be flat to up 12.5% for middle-market companies and 5% to 20% for larger companies, the report said

While auto fleets with a good loss history and fewer than 200 vehicles will see flat to 5% renewals, fleets of that size with poor loss records should expect 20% to 30% increases, USI said.

Excess auto buffer policies, which sit above primary policies, will likely increase up to 40%, the report said.

USI said workers' compensation remains competitive, with rate changes for guaranteed costs coverage in the -10% to up 3% range and loss-sensitive programs -7.5% to flat.