In October, the composite rates for commercial lines was plus 4 percent, compared to plus 5 percent in September, and for personal lines was plus 3 percent, compared to plus 4 percent last month.
Among commercial line segments, the largest downward adjustment was in general liability coverage, which was down from plus 6 percent to plus 3 percent. Small accounts and commercial property rates decreased from plus 6 percent to plus 4 percent. Business owners’ policies (BOP) rates decreased from plus 5 percent to plus 3 percent.
“The upward trajectory of rates certainly lost some steam in October,” said Richard Kerr, MarketScout’s CEO. “The general liability results are significant because this coverage is offered by a large percentage of both the admitted and non-admitted marketplace. We will watch closely to see if more aggressive pricing creeps into other lines of coverage through the end of the year.”
Five coverages measured rate reductions: property, BOP, general liability, D&O and EPLI. Commercial auto was the only coverage with a rate increase at plus 6 percent as compared to plus 5 percent the month before.
By industry class, contracting and habitational rates were lower than the preceding month.
Rates for accounts measured by size all remained the same as posted for the prior month with one notable exception: small accounts ($0 to $25,000 premium) moderated from plus 6 percent to plus 4 percent.
U.S. personal lines insurers, as the 2013 hurricane season comes to an end, are beginning to relax pricing. Homes under $1,000,000 and automobile exposures were assessed lower rate increases in October as the overall rate for October.
“Homeowners and auto coverages on traditional accounts are enjoying premium reductions largely due to little catastrophe activity, but the high value personal lines market actually assessed a month on month rate increase on their insureds,” Kerr said. “We expect the difference in pricing among traditional vs. high value accounts is due to the fact that high net-worth insurers provide significantly broader coverages, which ultimately result in more claims. Many of these types of claims would not be covered by traditional markets.”
For last month’s rate analysis, click here.
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