Merger and acquisition (M&A) activity in the insurance industry is increasing, although the number of deals still remains well below levels seen before the financial crisis, according to Swiss Re's latest sigma study, M&A in insurance: start of a new wave? 

The recent M&A upswing is largely concentrated in certain sectors such as specialty re/insurers and insurance intermediaries, Swiss Re says.

Survey results indicate that sentiment towards M&A is turning as confidence about the economy gradually improves and market participants look for deals to boost profitability as well as bolster their balance sheets. Of late, there has also been a pick-up in M&A deals in the P&C reinsurance sector.

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