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U.S. Life Insurance Applications Down, Says MIB

Source: Insurance Newsnet

Posted on 11 Aug 2010

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The number of applications for individually underwritten life insurance in the U.S. declined -3.9 percent in July 2010 vs. the same period last year for all ages combined, according to the MIB Life Index.

July marks the second consecutive month of declining application activity in a year mixed with monthly gains and losses. Year-to-date U.S. application activity is off less than one percentage point at -0.6%. July’s activity was off -4.7% from June levels; a decrease consistent with trends for this time period.

The U.S. MIB Life Index by age group for July showed ages 0-44, off -7.4%; ages 45-59, off -2.8%; and ages 60+, up +7.0% year-over-year. After ten consecutive months of growth starting in June 2009, application activity the ages 45-59 demographic continues to wane for the second straight month. The 60+ age group continues to grow, albeit at a more measured pace this summer. July marks the second consecutive month of single digit growth.

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 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.