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Football running backs with great blockers are often said to be “running downhill,” meaning they are running with great ferocity and there are no opposing tacklers in their way. There have been quite a few years when the insurance industry could be described as running downhill, but certainly not in 2011.

Carriers at least aren’t running uphill these days, but to carry the analogy to another sport, there are hurdles for carriers to clear if this is to be a successful year.

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