Commercial lines carriers face a continuing soft market and a competitive landscape. A recent report from Novarica indicates that these are behind carriers’ increased focus on expense reduction, growth strategies and improving underwriting results.

"As of the first quarter of 2010, the commercial market continues to be very soft," Karlyn Carnahan, a principal in Novarica's insurance practice and lead author of the study said in a statement. "Commercial is a particularly competitive line of business. It has experienced rate decreases every quarter since Q1 2004. While the magnitude of the price declines shrank during the economic crisis reflecting shrinking capital and reduced investment gains, the market remains soft despite deteriorating underwriting performance, higher CAT losses and costlier reinsurance."

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