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Insurance Industry Takes Moderate Hit from Recession

Author

Listed:
  • Thomas Url

    (WIFO)

Abstract

The premium income of Austria's private insurance industry stagnated in 2009; however, given the economic decline, income remained relatively robust. Nevertheless, with zero growth, 2009 remained one of the worst years in the recent past. Given the decline in nominal GDP (–3.1 percent), insurance penetration rose markedly to 6 percent, correcting the downward trend of recent years. The distribution of premium income among the three insurance branches shifted toward life and health insurance and away from car insurance, where income sank. This Austrian pattern was in line with the trend in continental Europe, which also experienced a decline in non-life insurance and a simultaneous shift in demand to life insurance policies with a minimum income guarantee. In contrast, the Anglo-Saxon-type insurance markets recorded a marked loss in premium income largely resulting from the collapse of unit-linked life insurance.

Suggested Citation

  • Thomas Url, 2010. "Insurance Industry Takes Moderate Hit from Recession," WIFO Monatsberichte (monthly reports), WIFO, vol. 83(10), pages 821-830, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:wfo:monber:y:2010:i:10:p:821-830
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