Industry Professionals Affirm RIMS Benchmark Survey Results

May 29, 2003

In a series of interviews conducted by Advisen, Ltd. since preliminary results of the RIMS Benchmark Survey were released last month, industry professionals report that the survey accurately reflects their current market experience.

The survey results, published by Risk and Insurance Management Society (RIMS), suggested that D&O and fiduciary insurance continues to be difficult and expensive to procure, while property and excess casualty coverage prices appear to be softening. The survey also confirmed that even as risk managers continue to pay more for similar policies, those policies are often harder to place, requiring more insurers to secure the needed program limits.

In interviews with several risk managers and insurance brokers conducted by Advisen, Ltd., a provider of specialized information, analytic and benchmarking tools exclusively for insurance professionals and a partner with RIMS on the survey, professionals indicated that the results reflect their real-market experience, corroborating that the survey offers the most accurate and timely overview of the commercial insurance market.

“The Survey represents the overall opinion of the market and our qualitative discussions with customers affirm that,” Tom Ruggieri, CEO of Advisen, commented. “As more and more risk managers participate in the survey, we are developing an invaluable, real-time indicator which will let risk managers see a snapshot market that has never existed before.”

For the past two years, retentions have also reportedly been rising as risk managers sought to mitigate the impact of double-digit rate increases and insurers attempted to reduce losses arising from property catastrophes, increased tort activity and corporate governance scandals. Yet, as some coverage becomes more expensive, harder to place, and requires higher retentions, the average limits remains virtually flat, according to the preliminary results.

Some risk managers said mid-year re-insurance renewals may offer additional visibility into the market conditions. RIMS and Advisen plan to issue similar quarterly results each quarter.

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