Braintree, MA. (June 8, 2017) —U.S. individually underwritten life insurance activity remained sluggish in May with the MIB Life Index composite down -2.0%, year-over-year. After five consecutive months of declining activity in 2017, the MIB Life Index is off -3.3% YTD. In relative terms, the May 2017 composite Life Index value (95.92) is .60 higher than that seen in May 2015 (95.32), the Index’s most recent expansionary period. May application activity was -8.3% off pace from April 2017 levels, but on par with seasonal norms.
U.S. life insurance application activity in May declined across ages 45 and higher and was flat across ages 0-44. Ages 0-44 was 0.0%, ages 45-59 was down -5.2%, and ages 60+ was down -2.8%, as compared to same month last year. With the first five months of 2017 behind us, application activity ages 0-44 are down –2.6% YTD, ages 45-59 are down -5.5% YTD, and application activity in ages 60+ are down -1.7% YTD. May’s results showed a very slight improvement in the YTD percent change for ages 0-44, while ages 60+ YTD worsened slightly. Ages 45-59 continue to account for the lion’s share of 2017 YTD declines.
About the MIB Life Index The MIB Life Index is the life insurance industry's timeliest measure of application activity in the United States. Released to the media each month, the Index is based on the number of searches MIB life member company underwriters perform on the MIB Checking Service database. Since the vast majority of individually underwritten life premium dollars in North America include an MIB search as a routine underwriting requirement, the MIB Life Index provides a reasonable means to estimate new business activity. For past releases, methodology or to subscribe visit www.mib.com/lifeindex.