industry: Steady growth,
but mixed outlook
By Rosalie L. Donlon, PropertyCasualty360.com
Although the insurance indus- try saw another year of mod- erate global economic growth in 2015, real global direct life
and non-life insurance premiums written
grew by 3. 8 percent in 2015, up from 3. 5
percent in 2014, according to a new re-port from Swiss Re.
In comparison, global real gross domestic product grew by 2. 5 percent.
In nominal dollar terms, however, premiums were down by 4. 2 percent because
of widespread currency depreciation
against the U.S. dollar.
Written before the United Kingdom
vote to leave the European Union, the re-
port notes that the global economy faces
four major headwinds that will produce
periods of market volatility alongside
moderate growth in 2016 and 2017:
continue to raise interest rates.
its capital account.
at low levels and are unlikely
to increase substantially.
continue to create uncertainty.
The global economy still faces many
downside risks, the report says. In the
United States, for example, the risk is inflation followed by more-rapid-than-expect-ed monetary tightening, and the effects of
the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from
the European Union are as yet unknown.
Non-life insurance —
the big picture
In good news for the non-life insurance
sector, the financial picture improved
further in 2015, with premiums up 3. 6
percent in real terms, higher than the 2. 4
percent gain seen in 2014. In nominal
dollar terms, non-life premiums fell 3. 8
percent because of currency depreciations against the dollar.
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