Boston - Will Katrina change the insurance industry in fundamental ways? Have loss patterns changed from "small and frequent" and "large and infrequent" to "very large and not infrequent?"In a new report, "After Katrina: What Now for the Insurance Industry?" Celent Communications Inc. examines the immediate and long-term implications of Katrina and describes best-case and worse-case scenarios of its impact on the insurance industry and select insurance providers.

In the near-term, insurers will raise rates and tighten terms, and public insurance programs will expand, according to Celent. In the long-term, there may be fundamental changes to the insurance industry's business model including: transforming capital requirements, new pricing methods, and a different approach to underwriting and claims. The report also describes the role that technology can play to support these changes and outlines the implications for insurers and technology vendors. Technology solutions are summarized within three categories: core system  (new business, policy administration, claims, etc.); enterprise solutions (such as rules engines that can be deployed across many processes and organizations); and infrastructure  (processors, networks, outsourcing, facilities).

According to Donald Light, Celent analyst and author of the report, "The human and economic consequences of Hurricane Katrina are still unfolding, but what is already clear is that Katrina is not just another big storm. Even in these early days, the unprecedented scale of Katrina and its aftermath demands a look at the longer-term implications for the insurance industry." Light continued, "Katrina was a very ill wind indeed. But in addition to physical and financial ruin, Katrina also has brought tough but meetable challenges for insurers, and real business opportunities for certain technology vendors."

Source: Celent Communications Inc.

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