In response to the Biden administration's latest move to combat the pandemic, companies are working to adopt systems that verify coronavirus vaccination status and to implement regular testing. Employers still have questions about the enforcement timeline, costs and other issues related to the administration's policy, legal experts say.
Insured catastrophe losses are running 101% above the average from 2008 to 2020, with Hurricane Ida accounting for a significant portion of that percentage, according to Jefferies. Without Ida, losses from January to August were 15% above the long-term average.
The attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, highlight the need for managing companies with contingencies against terrorist attacks and other unexpected events that lead to major insurance claims, says Robert Hartwig of the University of South Carolina's Risk and Uncertainty Management Center. David Priebe of Guy Carpenter says the insurance sector has become "a far more disciplined and resilient business" in light of Sept. 11, while Julian Enoizi of Pool Re says the private market could have a bigger role in covering smaller, conventional attacks.
The percentage of Americans who lacked health insurance for the entirety of 2020 was 8.6%, compared with 8.5% in 2018, according to the Census Bureau. The market did shift in some ways, with public health coverage increasing by 0.4 percentage point compared with 2018 and private health coverage declining by 0.8 percentage point.
The aggregate increase in commercial insurance pricing was slightly more than 6% in the second quarter, down from aggregate increases of 8% in Q1 and 10% in Q2 through Q4 of last year, according to a Willis Towers Watson survey. The sharpest reductions in pricing increases during Q2 of 2021 were in excess/umbrella liability and directors-and-officers liability, the survey found.
A "safe system approach" would benefit traffic safety more than the existing approach, "which favors automobiles and punishes only drivers for crashes" and "is clearly not working," National Transportation Safety Board Chair Jennifer Homendy said in prepared remarks. Speeding is one area of concern, Homendy said, questioning whether road and vehicle designs and federal guidance are among the factors encouraging high-speed driving.
Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler has laid out priorities in a Senate banking committee hearing, including his intention to increase transparency in the bond market. Gensler has also defended his move to require firms to disclose climate change risk, saying, "If investors want information about climate risk -- and it looks like tens of trillions of dollars of assets under management are asking -- then we at the SEC have a role to put something out to notice and comment, do the economic analysis, and really see what investors are saying."
From January 2017 through August 2020, the Department of Housing and Urban Development's rate of homes sold in federally designated flood zones was nearly 75 times that of US home sales overall, according to a National Public Radio analysis. Florida, Louisiana and New Jersey "stand out as hot spots," and people purchasing homes from HUD frequently got fewer flood-related disclosures than if they had bought homes from private sellers, according to NPR.
Insuring emergent financial-technology businesses comes with certain challenges because of regulatory issues and the unique mix of risks these companies face, experts say. "You have elements of financial-institution errors and omissions coverage, technology E&O coverage and cyber E&O coverage all embedded within the same risk profile," says Thomas Tierney of Marsh.
A survey of UK and US executives by specialty insurer Beazley found that cyberthreats are the top business concern, beating out the pandemic. Paul Bantick of Beazley says awareness of cyberrisk is encouraging but "technology is an area where the threat vector evolves constantly, and businesses need to continue updating risk management processes."
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Joan Baez, singer-songwriter, musician National Hispanic Heritage Month is Sept. 15 to Oct. 15
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