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"We are very encouraged by the overall positive growth, however we remain cautiously optimistic as growth early in 2012 predominated this year's results," said
Life insurance application activity grew across all three age groups in 2012 with ages 0-44, up +1.0%; ages 45-59, up +0.5%; and ages 60+, up +4.8% YTD as compared with last year. December's activity was mixed and diminished overall with ages 0-44 up +0.5%; ages 45-59 off
-0.6%; and ages 60+,up +1.5%, year-over-year. A retrospective six-quarter analysis (Q4, 2012 – Q3, 2011) shows application activity climbing in Q3 2011 to a peak at the end of Q1 2012 and then waning over the remaining quarters. The most notable trend shifts for 2012: modest growth in ages 0-44 (positive 7 of 12 month) after literally years of decline; nascent strength in ages 45-59 (positive 5 of 12 months); and slowing momentum ages 60+ (evidenced by 2-3% YTD declines in growth from 2009 to 2012). Modest Q4 performance in 2012 for ages 60+ may be related to uncertainty in the estate tax exemption which was settled in the closing days of December.
"This is the first time we've seen positive numbers in the ages 44 and below market, but it's far too early to understand if these trends will endure. This 1% gain on the year may signal ground gained on the industry's marketing challenges, but again we remain cautious," says Oliphant.
Monthly Percent Change
Q4 - 2012
Monthly Percent Change by Age
0 - 44
U.S. Monthly Percent Change
About the MIB Life Index
The MIB Life Index is the life insurance industry's timeliest measure of application activity in
MIB is the life and health insurance industry's most trusted resource for risk information and analytical services. Owned by the industry it has served for more than a century, MIB is uniquely positioned to aggregate industry insights in order to develop products and services for our members that improve their risk assessment.