The program administrators and managing general agents (PA/MGA) market has remained relatively consistent from 2008 to 2009, a new survey New York-based Guy Carpenter & Co. LLC finds.

The annual survey, aimed to shed light on the direction of the PA/MGA market, finds agents weathered the financial services meltdown well. Yet, the number did convey a bit of consternation about the direction of the market.

This year, 46 % of responded said that the PA/MGA market would remain flat, with 37 % forecasting growth and 17 % anticipating that it will shrink. These tallies are less optimistic than the previous year, when 56 % of respondents indicated that the PA/MGA market was growing.

However, when asked to gauge the size of the market, respondents almost uniformly perceive it to be large, with 67% estimating the total PA/MGA market to be at least $20 billion in gross written premiums. This number dropped from 92% the year before.

Similarly, when asked to estimate the industry’s combined ratio, respondents were also slightly less sanguine than the previous year, with 49 % putting the market in the 90 % to 95 % range, down from 68 % last year.

As for the challenges they face, new business production (66%), maintaining current rate levels (61%) and premium growth (58%) topped the list.


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