In a reversal from the previous year, sales in the group disability market were up at midyear 2007, according to a survey of the group disability market by JHA, a disability reinsurance, risk management and research firm in Portland, Maine.
The sales appeared to be driven by a few large carriers writing policies for larger employer groups, according to JHA’s midyear survey. The top 10 carriers held a market share of 83 percent of new long-term disability sales premiums and about 77 percent of new short-term disability sales premiums at midyear 2007, an increase from a year ago.
According to the JHA survey, the sales premiums for long-term and short-term disability insurance totaled $1.3 billion, up 15 percent at midyear 2007 compared with a year earlier. New sales premiums for long-term disability coverage were up 15 percent to $915 million, and new short-term disability sales also increased by 15 percent, to about $402 million.
Total combined group disability earned premiums at midyear reached just over $6.3 billion, an increase of 7 percent. The total number of insured employees grew by about 5 percent for both long-term and short-term disability, while the number of insured employer groups grew by 3 percent.
"With the majority of carriers reporting an increase in their quote activity at the time of this survey, new LTD industry sales could exceed $1.5 billion for the full year 2007," according to JHA. "This may indicate that some carriers are having more success reaching new buyers."
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