National Underwriter Property & Casualty-April 18, 2011

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  • Earthquake Demand Heats Up

    Susanne Sclafane

    Demand for earthquake coverage is heating up on the West Coast, according to two managing general underwriters offering coverage for commercial and residential properties.

  • Big Problems In Small Packages

    William F. Stewart

    In recent years, the use of engineered nanomaterials in consumer products like sunscreen, cosmetics, clothing and baby products has soared. As a result, substantial concern has developed because these tiny materials are often made of toxic substances, and closely resemble asbestos fibers.

  • With ASPCA Brand, MGA Sees Fourfold Growth Rate In Pet Niche

    Caroline McDonald

    Although pet insurance used to be a line of coverage that did little for pet owners and proved difficult for insurers, one company believes it has found the recipe for success in the niche—product transparency for consumers and diligent underwriting to improve carrier profitability.

  • FSOC Insurance Member Criticizes Handling Of Industry Interests

    Arthur D. Postal

    The insurance industry’s interests on the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) are “inadequately represented” because of the council’s policies, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) told a congressional panel.

  • State Farm, Allstate Get Rate-Hike Approvals

    Chad Hemenway, Joan E. Collier

    Allstate will be charging Mississippi homeowners an average of 19.4 percent more for insurance, and State Farm received approval for an average 18.8 percent rate hike in Florida.

  • Agents Split On Duty To Report Payroll Discrepancy To Current Insurer

    Peter R. Kensicki

    Readers weigh in on a dilemma proposed by Question Of Ethics Columnist Peter R. Kensicki regarding an agent’s obligation to report payroll misstatements that were discovered while preparing a proposal for a potential client. In Part 2, readers discuss duties to the current insurer and consider legal ramifications.

  • Loss Estimates Come In For Deadly U.S. Storms

    Chad Hemenway

    Insurers are beginning to size up the extent of damage left in the wake of storms that produced dozens of tornadoes that struck several Central Plains states, hail that caused damage in Texas, and strong winds and lightning in Georgia.

  • Japan Earthquake Halts Softening In Energy Market

    Mark E. Ruquet

    The earthquake in Japan and two other major losses for insurers have put the brakes at least for now on the soft-market pricing trend in the energy-insurance market, says a report from Willis Group.

  • Will Market Turn Prove Traumatic (Again) For Program Business?

    Susanne Sclafane

    With chatter about the next market turn heating up, it’s a good time to explore the impact on program business to see if there could be a replay of the gut-wrenching turmoil that left some program administrators (PA) out in the cold during the last soft-to-hard transition.

  • MGAs Uncork Multiple New Program Niches

    Susanne Sclafane

    In spite of carrier angst about backing start-up programs, MGAs are having success in launching new offerings for wine collectors, auto dealers and properties exposed to earthquake risk.

  • Cat Bonds Set 1Q Record

    Mark E. Ruquet

    The value of insurance-linked-securities (ILS) placements increased by more than half in the 2011 first quarter as four insurers placed more than $1 billion in bonds in the market, according to a report from Willis Group.

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