Investment performance is being hailed as the most pressing concern of insurers during this economic crisis, according to a recent survey from PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP.

When PricewaterhouseCoopers last polled insurers in its 2007 “Insurance Banana Skins” survey, investment returns failed to crack the top 10 concerns. But in 2009, investment performance, equity markets and capital availability topped the list. Overregulation—the No. 1 risk in 2007—fell to fifth place.

Respondents to this year’s survey are anxious about Solvency II, which some said would raise capital requirements during these “demanding times.” They also are apprehensive about a regulatory knee-jerk reaction to the banking crisis, the report says.

Exposure-led risks, such as pollution, catastrophe exposures, terrorism and climate change, also dropped in the rankings, as risks related to the financial downturn rose to the forefront.

New York-based Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation worked in conjunction with PricewaterhouseCoopers on its “Insurance Banana Skins 2009” survey. They interviewed 400 companies in 39 countries.

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