Industry Research

The following Best's Special Reports and Best's Briefings present in-depth analyses of the Life/Health insurance market. Best's Special Reports provide a comprehensive examination of the market, events and trends from A.M. Best's unique perspective, while Best's Briefings feature similar analysis in a more concise format.

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Commentary: French Life Insurers Under Pressure to Cut Bonus Rates as Low Interest Rates Bite: The prevalence of euro-denominated contracts in French life insurers’ portfolios, combined with the interest rate environment, has been detrimental to solvency ratios.
Date: January 31, 2020    
Commentary: Coronavirus Highlights the Importance of Stress Testing: Reinsurers may face higher levels of risk than life/health insurers, given that reinsurers’ risk profiles entail higher exposures to mortality and morbidity risks.
Date: January 29, 2020    
2019 Best’s Rankings: U.S. Life/Health – 9-Month 2019 Financial Results: This Best’s Ranking report presents the top 25 U.S. life/health groups as ranked by nine-month 2019 total admitted assets as of Sept. 30, 2019.
Date: December 9, 2019    
Special Report: 2018 US Life/Health Impairments Update: Only two companies became impaired in 2018.
Date: December 9, 2019    
Market Segment Report: Market Segment Outlook: Global Reinsurance: Global reinsurance Stable outlook maintained owing to improving pricing environment for non-life and stable operating performance for life.
Date: December 5, 2019    
Market Segment Report: Market Segment Outlook: US Life/Annuity: Our Stable outlook is based on the segment’s strong capitalization, improved liquidity, and manageable regulatory environment, as well as modest top-line growth and limited innovation initiatives.
Date: December 5, 2019    
Market Segment Report: Market Segment Outlook: Global Life Reinsurance: The global life reinsurance market remains competitive but offers very favorable growth opportunities over a longer time horizon.
Date: December 5, 2019    
Special Report: First Look – 9-Month 2019 Life/Annuity Financial Results: The L/A segment’s income rose slightly in the first nine months of the year, with a $56.9 billion increase in premiums and annuity considerations offsetting a $41.1 billion decline in other income.
Date: November 26, 2019    
Special Report: US Life/Annuity Insurers’ BBB Bond Exposures Continue to Grow: Since the financial crisis, the L/A segment has held the highest percentage of BBB securities, while the smaller exposures of the P/C and health segments have doubled.
Date: November 25, 2019    
Special Report: Life/Annuity Companies’ Appetite for Long-Term Debt Kept in Check: Insurers’ long-term debt holdings have generally declined since 2010; AM Best expects segment demand for additional long-term debt to be stable or to rise only modestly.
Date: November 21, 2019    
Special Report: Life/Annuity Holdings of Structured Notes on the Rise: Holdings of structured notes have increased substantially but they still constitute a relatively small portion of insurers’ general accounts—roughly 1% of the segment’s total invested assets in 2018.
Date: November 21, 2019    
Market Segment Report: Market Segment Outlook: Mexico Insurance: Our Stable outlook for Mexico’s insurance market is based on the segment’s strong balance sheets, robust reinsurance programs, and appropriate enterprise risk management.
Date: October 28, 2019    
Market Segment Report: Group Business Now Driving the Critical Illness Market: Critical illness insurance is growing rapidly in the group segment.
Date: October 23, 2019    
Special Report: Registered Index-Linked Annuities Gaining Foothold in VA Segment: RILAs offer more upside potential than fixed index annuities, but policyholders must be willing to absorb some risk.
Date: October 21, 2019    
Market Segment Report: US Fraternals Face a Difficult Growth Environment: Operating results have improved, but the fraternal societies are facing a number of challenges with regard to growing both their membership base and premiums.
Date: October 8, 2019    
Commentary: Green and Sustainability Bond Issuance by Insurers May Continue To Grow: Two recent issues signal insurers’ growing willingness to issue green/sustainability bonds.
Date: October 7, 2019    
2019 Best’s Rankings: U.S. Life/Health – Industry’s Six-Month Admitted Assets Increased by 5.2%: This Best’s Ranking report presents the top 100 U.S. life/health insurers as based on six-month 2019 admitted assets.
Date: October 7, 2019    
2019 Best’s Rankings: U.S. Life/Health – Industry’s Pretax Investment Total Return Decreased to 4.46%: This Best’s Ranking report presents the top 100 U.S. life/health insurers as ranked by 2018 total admitted assets.
Date: October 7, 2019    
Market Segment Report: Farm Bureaus: Favorable Ratings Despite Limited Business Profiles: Over the past decade, the P/C farm bureaus’ net premium has grown consistently, while the L/A segment’s growth has fluctuated within a narrow range and remains a challenge.
Date: September 23, 2019    
Market Segment Report: Canada Insurance: Still Profitable Amid Growing Challenges: Our outlook for Canada’s insurance industry remains Stable, as Canada’s insurers face challenges such as economic uncertainty, regulatory issues, and climate conditions.
Date: September 13, 2019    
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