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Critical and income insurance sales hit record year

Individual critical-illness and individual income protection sales had a bumper year in 2001, surpassing previous sales records, according to the latest figures from reinsurer Swiss Re.

In its 2002 edition of HealthWatch, Swiss Re shows that sales of individual critical-illness cover increased by 12 per cent to 872,184 from 780,271 in 2000 and individual income-protection sales increased by 11 per cent to 204,379 from 184,780.

The report says 46 per cent or 402,100 of critical-illness cover and 48 per cent or 98,138 of income-protection sales came through IFAs.

The company says the majority of new sales can be linked to the continuing buoyancy of the housing market. Mortgage-related critical-illness cover sales represented 56 per cent or 491,040 of new sales and 41 per cent or 84,000 of individual income-protection sales last year.

The report shows how market consolidation of providers is increasing. It says the top five providers account for 59 per cent of critical-illness cover sales up from 49 per cent in 2000 and for 57 per cent of income-protection sales up from 49.5 per cent in 2000.

Technical manager Ron Wheatcroft says: “The growth of new sales demonstrates the value placed on protection. The report shows the attraction of products related to a specific need, namely a mortgage. This indicates the potential to provide wider non-mortgage-related coverage at a later stage.”


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