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Tuesday, 14 June 2011

A.M. Best has chosen to maintain its stable ratings outlook for the global non-life reinsurance industry as companies are beginning to see pressure in the market for rate increases.

Following the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan, research has shown that reinsurers are already beginning to increase rates and are now expecting a firmer market going forward. Collective losses from other recent catastrophes such as the Christchurch earthquake in New Zealand and the floods in Queensland Australia have made reinsurers adopt capital conserving strategies whilst simultaneously pushing for higher rates.

As a result of the scale...

Thursday, 09 June 2011

ICMIF member La Segunda recently announced the opening of a prestigious new corporate building in Rosario, Argentina. The building was officially opened in February this year. The opening was attended by the Governor of the Santa Fe Province, Dr Hermes Binner, the Mayor of the city of Rosario, Dr Miguel Lifschitez and the General Manager of La Segunda Group, Señor Alberto Grimaldi and the Chairman of the Board, Señor Hugo Tallone (pictured right). La Segunda is ranked among the top ten comprehensive insurance providers in Argentina and has more than one and a half million policyholders.

Also at the opening event were two other...

Thursday, 02 June 2011

The Philippine insurance market has experienced some challenging times in the last few years but there is a renewed optimism that the industry could grow significantly in 2011. The life insurance market is showing an improvement in premiums written while the non-life sector is benefiting from the compulsory take-up of third party motor insurance as well as a renewed spending on construction.

The Philippine market has grown successively since 1999 but after growth fell to 1.1% in 2009 it has since rebounded considerably to post growth of 7% in 2010 and there is now renewed hope that the growth rate can continue this year.


Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Ethias Insurance, an ICMIF member based in Belgium, has launched an app for the GPS iPhone. The app is known as “Safest Route” and the purpose of the app is so that insurance company Ethias can offer its clients an alternative way to plan their journey so that it is a safe route to their destination instead of the shortest and the fastest route as with other route planners.

The route planner makes a warning noise every time the user approaches a dangerous area on the Belgian road network and it will also alert the user to their current speed so that they can modify their driving to the current situation. Ethias is the first company...

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Invesco have issued their Economic outlook for the second quarter of 2011. The report highlights that between September 2010 and the Japanese Earthquake on March 11, 2011, the equity and commodity markets have experienced an extended rally, largely on the back of the prospect of a sustained recovery of the leading economies, particularly the United States.

The major factors in the upturn of fortunes in the US market have been the second round of Quantitative Easing in November 2010 and the fiscal stimulus package agreed between the Obama administration and Congress in December 2010. However Quantitative Easing will end in June and...

Monday, 23 May 2011

ICMIF has now published the first edition of what will be an annual publication: ICMIF Members Key Statistics 2009. This publication analyses in detail financial data about member organisations of ICMIF.

A limited mail out of the report is taking place to the membership but it is also now available to download from the ICMIF web site.

The report makes encouraging reading for the mutual and cooperative insurance sector. It shows that ICMIF members collectively increased their premium income market share from 5.7% in 2008 to 6.1% in 2009. ICMIF members hold a market share of 9.9% in non-life business and 3.3% in life...

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Canadian property and casualty mutuals are gearing up for a possible battle against a new wave of demutualisation, following attempts by consultants to encourage policyholders in one firm to contemplate such a move.

CAMIC, the Canadian Association of Mutual Insurance Companies, is urging the Canadian Minister of Finance Jim Flaherty not to draft the necessary demutualisation regulations. CAMIC links 91 of the 106 property and casualty mutuals across Canada, many established by farmers over a century ago. “The mutual companies they created are almost exclusively governed under the ‘one person, one vote’ principle. Further, most...

Friday, 13 May 2011

Juan Enrique Bustamante has stepped down as General Manager at ICMIF member Coopseguros in Ecuador.

Having held that position for the previous six years Juan Enrique says, “now life holds new professional challenges in my home country of Colombia which have made me reconsider my objectives and set new horizons, luckily I will remain in the insurance sector to which I have devoted all of my professional life”.

During his tenure at Coopseguros the company’s main objectives were to implement changes to lines of business, returning more to its roots and positioning itself as one of the leading cooperative players in Ecuador....

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

On April 24, 2011, US-based ICMIF member EMC Insurance Companies celebrated 100 years in business, joining an elite group of companies as less than 13% of property and casualty companies in the USA are 100 years or older—and the majority of those are mutual companies.

"We’re proud of our mutual heritage." says Ron Hallenbeck, EMC's Vice President, Reinsurance. "We began as a mutual company in 1911 and have stayed true to that business model. This has allowed us to take a long-term approach in our strategies and business decisions, emphasising conservative investing and careful risk selection."

To celebrate their 100-year...

Friday, 08 April 2011

As a result of recent events in Japan ICMIF has taken a decision to relocate its Biennial Conference scheduled to take place in October in Tokyo to Manchester in the UK. The event will take place on the same dates as those originally scheduled for the Tokyo Conference, October 26-28.

In moving the Biennial Conference to the UK’s second city, Manchester, ICMIF has placed the event in the birth place of the cooperative movement and also in the city which has been home to ICMIF since 1993 when it started down the route to becoming the active Federation which it is today.

Speaking about the decision to make the move, Shaun...