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March 4, 2013

  Top Story 
  • Report: Market value for catastrophe bonds was $14.6B last year
    There were 115 catastrophe bonds in the Swiss Re Global Cat Bond Indices last year with a record-high market value of $14.6 billion, Swiss Re says. "[I]nsurers have sought to securitize riskier layers using indemnity triggers which more closely reflect their ultimate net losses. In 2012 this trend became more pronounced as investors accepted more complex risks including aggregate indemnity, commercial indemnity and residual pool risk," the report says. Business Insurance (tiered subscription model) (3/1) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Industry News 
  • Execs: Insurance-business and IT cooperation is crucial for growth
    Partnerships that align the information-technology department with insurance business operations are important for insurers to remain competitive, executives say. "One of the things that's been advantageous for us is 'no legacy.' Without that burden, we've been able to think about what we're doing, how we're doing it, and challenging the thinking of the business rules," said Justin Manley of Torus Insurance. Insurance Networking News (3/1) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Insurers can harness technology to add business, experts say
    Insurers should identify technologies to streamline the writing of new business while ensuring a positive customer experience, says Deb Smallwood of Strategy Meets Action. Carriers that can "look beyond a specific technology or application solution are making wiser investments that extend well beyond a single system or a single technology," Smallwood says. Insurers also should rely on technology that allows agents to quickly give coverage information to clients, says StoneRiver's Jerry Whetnall. "An important piece of the new business process that many insurers are missing is the financial advice/needs assessment piece," Whetnall says. InsuranceTech.com (3/1) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Catastrophic Risk 
  • Group: Miss. home-retrofit program can lead to insurance discounts
    A grant program in Mississippi seeks to make homes along the coast more resilient to hurricanes, the state Windstorm Mitigation Coordinating Council says. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has provided $27 million for the program, said Mike Ferdinand, who heads the program. Homes with such retrofits can receive up to a 42% discount on homeowners' insurance, the council says. "They are significant discounts -- the problem is not enough people are using them," said State Farm attorney Steve Simpkins, a member of the council. The Sun Herald (Biloxi-Gulfport, Miss.) (3/2) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Commentary: U.S. disaster fund may not benefit Calif.
    Florida could benefit from legislation to create a national semi-private pool for catastrophe risk, but such a move could undermine California's "already unstable finances," writes Eli Lehrer of the R Street Institute. While the California Earthquake Authority has sound finances, Florida's Hurricane Catastrophe Fund is facing difficulty, Lehrer writes. If the two are linked "through federal risk pooling, the authority and California's taxpayers could end up paying substantial costs for a hurricane in Florida," he writes. San Jose Mercury News (Calif.) (free registration) (3/2) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Policy and Law 
  • Conn. lawmakers consider bill for expanded workers' comp coverage
    The Connecticut General Assembly is scheduled to vote Wednesday on a measure that would require workers' compensation coverage for the treatment of work-related mental illnesses, House Speaker Brendan Sharkey says. Lawmakers also are considering a special fund for workers who suffered mental trauma from the Newtown school shooting. The proposal would create "some equity in the workers' compensation system," state Sen. Cathy Osten. Insurance Journal/The Associated Press (3/2) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Association News 
  • PCI urges consumers to be ready for severe weather
    PCI is encouraging is encouraging individuals, families and businesses to use National Severe Weather Preparedness Week, from March 3 to 9, as an opportunity to become better prepared physically as well as financially for severe weather threats. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  SmartQuote 
The man who insists upon seeing with perfect clearness before he decides, never decides. Accept life, and you must accept regret."
--Henri Frédéric Amiel,
Swiss philosopher, poet and critic


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