New York - More than three-quarters (77%) of the 100 insurance executives representing the property and casualty and life sectors, along with key market participants who attended Standard & Poor's Ratings Services' 23rd annual insurance conference favored an optional charter for insurance regulation."It is not surprising that the conference participants selected optional federal charter with the emphasis on optional," says Standard & Poor's Insurance Practice Leader Grace Osborne. "The insurance market is becoming increasingly global in scope, and the U.S. insurance industry does not have a single voice to advocate U.S. interests with the foreign regulators and various accounting regimes."

A recap of other results from the survey, with comparisons from 2006:

What Single Industry Risk Is Of Most Concern To You?

  • Irresponsible competition 45%(2007)—36%(2006)
  • Natural catastrophes 20%(2007)—29%(2006)
  • Regulatory risks 20%(2007)—16%(2006)
  • Rapidly rising interest rates 7%(2007)—8%(2006)
  • Terrorism 7%(2007)—9%(2006)
  • Pandemics 1%(2007)—2%(2006)

Who Is Most Influential In Driving Insurance Executive Decision-Making?

  • Shareholders 46%(2007)—47%(2006)
  • Competitors 26%(2007)—27%(2006)
  • Rating agencies 21%(2007)—17%(2006)
  • Regulators 7%(2007)—9%(2006)

What Do You Think Will Happen To Insurance Company Returns In The Next Three Years?

  • Increase 26%(2007)—37%(2006)
  • Decrease 44%(2007)—40%(2006)
  • Remain the same 30%(2007)—23%(2006)

Source: Standard & Poor's


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