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Protection market review December 2016

Protection market update for December 2016

Macro news and drivers

MPs ready to vote against triggering Brexit
Several MPs say they will vote against triggering Article 50 as they call for a referendum on the UK's Brexit deal with EU leaders.  
Income protection sales surge 18%
Reinsurer Gen Re reported a significant increase in protection sales in the first half of the year. According to the reinsurer's latest Protection Pulse report, total protection premiums are up by 5% this year compared to the first half of 2015, with income protection sales up by more than 18%.  
Employee benefit schemes at risk post-brexit
Employee benefits programmes could be reduced as UK companies come under increasing cost pressure following the vote to leave the European Union, research has found.  
DWP demands new group income protection products
Insurance providers must work harder to develop better and more affordable group income protection products for smaller employers, the Department for Work and Pensions has said.   

Regulation and legislation

CII launches strategic manifesto to help build public trust
The Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) has launched its strategic manifesto, setting out a roadmap for the next five years to show how it will modernise and work with the insurance sector to build public trust.  
Green paper explores greater role for income protection
The Department of Health has launched its green paper, 'Improving Lives: The Work, Health and Disability Green Paper' and is discussing how to improve access to income protection through the workplace.
HMRC challenges tax status of relevant life plans
The tax status of relevant life plans with critical illness cover has been thrown into question after HM Revenue and Customs told one provider its product could not qualify for favourable tax treatment.  

Product developments and innovation

L&G forms trans-Atlantic insurance division
Legal & General has formed a new trans-Atlantic insurance division to bridge its UK and US offerings.  
Zurich raises the bar on claims history transparency
As part of its bid to raise transparency in insurance Zurich UK has revealed its claims history for life and general insurance claims in the first half of the year.  
Canada Life renews contract with RedArc
Canada Life Group Insurance has renewed its contract with RedArc to provide long-term support for group critical illness claimants for another three years.  
Scottish Widows protect introduces annual protection summaries
The summaries will be sent to advisers and their clients to remind customers how valuable their cover is and prompt them to have annual review meetings with their adviser.  
OMW launches online application for protection products
Old Mutual Wealth said it's new Protect Quote and Apply system will make it easier for advisers to bring flexible protection options and a wide-range of cover options to their clients using the online system.  

Consumer trends

Zurich flags up high untapped demand
More than half of respondents to the firm's global survey (52%) reported they would consider buying this form of insurance, yet just over one in 10 (11%) of the UK working population have cover in place.  
Advice demand for long-term care on the rise
Advisers are set to pick up more work planning for long term care needs, a new survey by Just Retirement Partnership suggests.  
Cancer claims on rise among men
Cancer accounted for 50 per cent of all male critical illness claims in 2015, statistics from Aegon have shown. As the Movember men's health campaign gets underway this month, figures from the insurer have revealed that prostate cancer was by far the most common health cause for men claiming on their critical illness policies.  
IFAS ditch insurance to focus on investment
Advisers in the UK are stopping selling life insurance, critical illness and income protection in favour of more lucrative investment planning, research has claimed.  

Experts corner

Having a critical illness cover conversation
Advisers need to focus on the need for the insurance, and the consequences of not having it, before any discussion of the products can be brought into the conversation. This is the view of Chris McNab, protection product manager for LV… 


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