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Chapter 17

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									             21. Life Insurance

                        Dr. Jan-Juy Lin
Dept. of Risk Management and Insurance
                   ETP course, CNCCU

 Policies sold by life insurance companies
    Mortality-Based Insurance Policies
    Morbidity-Based Insurance Policies
 Selected life insurance markets
    Life insurance markets in the Americas
    European life insurance markets
    Life insurance markets in the Asia-Pacific region
    African life insurance markets
 Discussion Questions
Life Insurance Policies

 Historically, policies sold by life insurers involved
 only life contingencies
   Payments to policyholders or their beneficiaries are
   determined by whether insureds are alive or dead.
 Definitions within the life branch are not always
 consistent internationally. (e.g. US, EU)
 Types of policies
   Mortality-based insurance policies
   Morbidity-based insurance policies

Mortality-based Policies

  Two classes
    Life insurance (assurance) policies / Endowments
      Pay a benefit if the insured dies during the policy term
      “Assurance”- Commonly used in Commonwealth

    Annuities / Pensions
      Pay a benefit if the insured survives for a prescribed
      time or to a certain age

Life Insurance Policies

  Key words
    Face amount (sum assured)
      Pay a death benefit as a stated sum of money
      The individual whose death triggers payment of the
      face amount
      The person who applies for the policy
    Policyholder (policy owner)
      The person who can exercise all policy rights and with
      whom the insurer deals
      Receive the face amount on the death of the insured
Term Life Insurance

 Coverage period
    Yearly renewable term (YRT)
    10- and 20-year (level-premium) term policies
    Life-expectancy term
    Term-to-age 65
 Users: low income, high coverage needed
 Other features
    Reentry (proof of insurability)
    Low premium but with no cash value

Illustration of Term-to-Age 65 Policy (Figure 21.1)

Cash Value Life Insurance

 Policies combine term insurance and internal
 savings (cash value) within the same contract.
    Net amount at risk (NAR) – the difference between the
    policy face amount and the cash value
    Cost of insurance (COI) rate – a set of internal YRT rates
    that increase with age
    Participating vs. nonparticipating policies with respect to:
       Mortality experience
       Insurer expense experience
       Investment experience

Illustration of Whole Life Policy (Figure 21.2)

Universal Life

  Flexible-premium, adjustable death benefit
  contracts whose cash values and durations depend
  on the premiums paid into them. (a current A/C)
  Policy transparency
    their internal operations, interest rates and charges for
    COI and loadings are disclosed each year to the
  Surrender charge / back-end load
    A graded penalty applied against the cash value if the
    policy is terminated within a few years of issue.
  Variable universal life (VUL) / unit-linked UL
    Combines the flexibility and transparency of a universal
    life policy with the investment flexibility and risk of a
    mutual fund. (Q: Unit-link v. Traditional Life)
Whole Life

 Unlike universal life policies, premiums for whole life
    Are directly related to the amount of insurance purchased
    Must be paid when due (or the policy will terminate)
    Are calculated to sure that the policy will remain in effect
    for the entire life time of the insured

 Classification based on premium-payment period
    Ordinary life (level premium whole life)
    Limited-payment whole life
    Single-premium whole life
       Paid-up policy

Whole Life

 Classification based on policyholder participation
    Current assumption whole life (CAWL)
      Also called as interest sensitive whole life or fixed
      premium universal life
    Variable (unit-linked) whole life
      The premium is fixed.
      The policy is guaranteed to remain in effect for the
      whole of the insured’s life.
      Not only the cash value but also the face amount can
      Comparison: WL with UL

Whole Life

 Classification based on the number of lives
   Single life (by default)
   First-to-die (joint) life
      The face amount is paid on the first death of either of
      two insured.
    Second-to-die (survivor) life
      Pays the face amount only after the second insured

Endowment Insurance

 Two mutually exclusive insurer promises to pay the
 face amount if the insured
   Dies during the policy period  level-premium term life
   Survives to the end of the period  pure endowment

 Various policy durations
   Age-at-maturity based


 To protect against the possibility of outliving one’s income –
 just the opposite of life insurance.
 It promises to make a series of payments through systematic
 liquidation of principal and interest for a fixed period or over a
 person’s lifetime.
 Life annuity – contingent on whether the annuity is alive
 Whole life annuity – payable for the whole of the
 annuitant’s life
 Annuity certain – payments for a set period of time
 Temporary life annuity – payable for the earlier of a fixed
 period or death

Classification of Annuities (Figure 21.3)


 Number of lives   Premium payment     Beginning of           Benefit receipt        Redemption
    covered            options       benefit payments            options               options

       Single            Single           Immediate                Life annuity        Currency

      Multiple          Periodic          Deferred                  Temporary             Local

                                                                  Period-certain         Foreign

                                                                   Reversionary       Unit-linked

                                                                  Life with refund      Fixed units

                                                                                       Variable units
                                                    Installment        Cash

Illustration of Level-Premium Deferred Annuity (Figure 21.4)

Nature of Insurance Company’s Obligations

 Insurer obligations during
    The accumulation period
      Time period during which annuity fund values
      accumulate, commonly prior to retirement
    The liquidation period
      Time period during which annuity fund values are paid
      to annuitants

Morbidity-based Insurance Policies

 Potential economic losses associated with the
 health risk
   Medical expenses
    Expenses to provide long-term care (LTC)
    Reduction (elimination) of income during the affected
 Types of policies
    Health insurance
    Long-term care insurance
    Disability income insurance

Health insurance policies

 (supplemental) health insurance
    Extend indemnification to areas not covered by the
    primary health insurance
 Hospital confinement indemnity insurance
    A fixed sum for each day of hospital confinement
 Specified-disease insurance (dread-disease insurance)
    Individual coverage that can pay a variety of benefits up
    to substantial maximums solely for the treatment of
    diseases named in the policy
 Guaranteed renewal vs. non-guaranteed renewal
  if the insured has the contractual right to continue the
Long-term care (LTC) insurance

 The common external sources of LTC financing include
 government, group plans and individual insurance.
 Private LTC insurance pays for services when the insured is
 unable to perform certain activities of daily living without
 Coverage varies from market to market and also based on
 how benefits are paid.
 Insureds may select from an array of options
    The length of the benefit
    The maximum daily benefit
    Length of the elimination period before benefits become

Disability Income Insurance

 Three major sources of external finance for the
    Government  social insurance
    Group plan  from the employer
    Individual disability income insurance
 Disability income insurance
    Provides monthly benefits to replace lost income during
    the period of disability
    Three basic components
       The elimination (waiting) period
       The benefit amount
       The benefit period
Disability Income Insurance

 Definitions of disability
    Any occupation v. Own occupation
      The insured will be deemed to be totally disabled if
      sickness or injury prevents them from the major duties
      of ANY / THEIR OWN occupations. (which one is
      wider in terms of coverage?)

 Supplemental benefits
   Residual disability benefits
   Partial disability benefits
   Inflation protection benefits
   Provisions for increased benefit amounts

Selected Life Insurance
 Markets Internationally
The Americas – the U.S.

 The world’s largest market

 International interest by U.S. insurers has increased
    The U.S. market is mature
    The attractive growth rates existing in various overseas
    The search for more profitable business
    Increasing competition in U.S. market

The Americas – the U.S.

 A wide array of products invented and sold
   1,200 insurers compete  a significant reduction
   from 2,343 in 1998

 Distribution mainly by agents and brokers (90%)
   More companies experiment alternative
   distribution systems

The Americas – the U.S.

 Market issues
   Financial modernization – Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act
    dramatically reduced restrictions on US financial
    institution integration
    Regulatory concerns – from the state level to the
    federal level
    Health insurance reform – the cost of healthcare rose
    Emphasis on financial stability – a company’s
    financial stability is as important as policy cost
    Implementation of risk-based capital (RBC) –
    greater risk business, greater capital required

The Americas – the U.S. (Figure 21.5)

The Americas – Canada

 The market
   About 90% of the 105 insurers are federally regulated
   Much cross-border business -- closely intertwined with US
   life insurance industries

 Products and distribution systems
   Annuity and morbidity-based sectors accounted for 42%
   and 35% of the life insurance market
     Life insurance share continues to decline
   About 60% of business by full-time career agents

The Americas – Canada

 Market issues
   Solvency crisis
      Several insurance companies became insolvent
      CompCorp was established to minimize insolvencies
   Entry of banks into market
      A strong national banking system
      The legislation permitted banks to own insurers but
      prohibited banks from using their customer lists for
      marketing insurance
   Québec Sovereignty issue
      Québec may secede from Canada?
      Most Canadian insurers operate in Québec 
      uncertainty makes long range planning difficult
The Americas – Latin America

   Remains relatively small in a global comparison
      Three major markets are Brazil, Mexico and
   Rampant inflation and government instability
   harming the growth of life insurance markets
   Still very strong growth potential
   A rise in foreign insurer presence

The Americas – Latin America

 Products and distribution systems
   A rise in product scope, including hard currency-
   denominated policies
   Distribution traditionally by career agents
   Recently, independent agents, brokers,
   marketing firms and international brokers have
   Bancassurance grows rapidly in Brazil

The Americas – Latin America

 Market issues
   Regional trade agreements
     It’s hard for domestic insurers to compete with
     foreign insurers.

    Economic and political stability
      Market economies remain early in that process
      Political parties in many opposite


   Products characterized as life insurance in many
   European countries would not meet the usual
   definition of life insurance, as they are pure
   investment/savings products with little or no
   mortality risk.
      Similarly in South Africa and selected Asian


 Represented 39% of the global life insurance
   Numerous leading markets in Western Europe, such as
   the U.K., France, Switzerland, Belgium, Finland and
 Key developments
   Expansion of the E.U. and the single market/license policy
     France, Italy, Spain and Germany

Europe – the U.K.

   The largest life insurance market in Europe
   Life insurance and pensions funds as traditionally
   preferred savings vehicles
   160 insurers compete in the market
   Bonuses are a key feature of many policies.
      Reversionary bonuses – paid-up additional life
      Terminal bonuses – distribute unrealized capital gains
   Personal Equity Plan (PEP) as a means to increase
   Bancassurance not yet significant
Europe – the U.K.

 Three market sectors
    Life insurance comprising basic life insurance and
    annuities, pension business ……
    Other long-term business such as permanent health
    insurance and pension fund management activity
    Other than long-term business
    The Financial Services Act of 1986 and the independent
    financial advisor (IFA) as a new, now dominating,
    distribution channel
        Brokers, albeit still strong, continue to lose their market

Europe – France

    One of the largest and most highly developed life
    insurance industries in the world
    Caisse Nationale de Prévoyance (CNP), AXA, Predica,
    BNP Parabas Assurance and Generali lead the market.

 Products and distributions
    A variety of products available, including capital
    redemption bonds
    Bancassurance dominates new policy markets

Europe – Germany

   Largest companies were locally incorporated – Allianz,
   Hamburg-Mannheimer, Aschener und Munchener, R&V,
   and Deutsche Herold
 Products and distributions
   Annuities and endowment insurance most popular
   Policy dividend treatment similar to that of the U.K.
   Tied agents as the main distributors, followed by
   independent agents and brokers
   Tax reforms (no longer tax deductions for premium
   payments by individuals)

Europe – Russia

    Largest European market by population
    Recently privatized, now with 1,500 life and non-life
    insurance companies
    Rapid market growth in recent years

    Rudimentary legal framework for free free-market
    insurance activities
       What legally constitutes an insurance company?
       What legal ownership it may take?

Europe – Market Issues

 E.U. harmonization
    Third Life Insurance Directive may no longer hinder
    competitions from insurers domiciled in other EU country.
 Introduction of International Financial Reporting
 Standards (IFRS)
    The EU and most other major markets are moving toward
    compliance with the IFRS of the IASB.
 Bancassurance movement
    As bancassurance widely accepted, it will be increasingly
    difficult for conventional insurers to support costly agency
    distribution systems.

Europe – Market Issues

 Direct response marketing
    Frequently benefit from an even lower cost structure than
    that of the bancaasuance companies.
 Recession and unemployment
    Europe continues to experience major unemployment
    problems, particularly among the youth.
 The evolving pension and health market
    It’s an opportunity for private insurers that provide
    supplemental health insurance and pensions.


    The world’s greatest life insurance potential
    Displays immense diversity in level of economic
    and political development, ethnicity, culture and
       Already developed include Australia, New Zealand,
       Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and Singapore
       China and India  the most promising markets
    In economically affluent countries, life insurance
    products with strong savings elements
    predominate. ( e.g.Taiwan, Singapore)
Asia-Pacific – Japan

    World’s second largest after the U.S.
    Major reforms in financial services in the 1990s and
       Insurance Business Law revised in 1996
       Life market liberalization as part of the reforms
       The third-sector in the life insurance market
    Industry associations greatly influence the market.
 Products and distributions
    Traditional life policies remain popular
    Large network of part-time, female agents

Asia-Pacific – Japan

    Role of non-conventional life insurers
      Kampo & Zenkyoren
      The government plans to restructure its postal
      agency as a holding company for privatization.
    Mega mergers and acquisitions
      Mergers and acquisitions likely guarantee the
      dominance of a few large life insurers in Japan.

Asia-Pacific – Japan

    Fallout from the bubble economy
      The bubble economy came to an end but most
      insurers suffered heavy losses.
    Aging population
      The world’s oldest country in terms of
      population age
    Westernization of the younger generation
      The younger generation consumer much more
      than their parents, with a reduction in savings.

Asia-Pacific – Korea

    The world’s seventh largest
    The economy has recovered from the Asian economy
    Several key reformatory measures in the market
    Industry associations greatly influence the market.
    Chronic problem of policy lapses and surrenders
  Products and distributions
    Bancassurance strongly promoted by government
    Products with limited period (up to 10 years) and pensions
    also sold by nonlife insurance companies
Asia-Pacific – Taiwan

    A strong life insurance industry and the world’s highest life
    insurance penetration
    30 life insurance companies – including eight foreign
    companies – operate.
 Products and distributions
    Traditional products such as whole life and endowment
    have the largest proportions of in-force business
    Unit-linked life and annuity products have shown strong
    recent sales
    Distribution mainly by part-time agents
       Brokerage channel and bancassurance growing rapidly

Asia-Pacific – China

     The greatest growth potential in the world
     Life insurance premium growth at about 24% per year
     during the last decade
     Foreign insurer participation in its market only during the
        Local insurers still dominate – China Life, Ping An, and
        China Pacific Life
  Products and distributions
     Simple products thus far and via exclusive agents
     Further market liberalization and deregulation
Asia-Pacific – India

    Annual life premium growth averaged about 13%
    Privatized since 1999
    Low consumption and penetration ratios
  Products and distributions
    Bancassurance and broker system introduced
    Provision of health insurance in the private sector
    Further deregulation
    Foreign ownership of local company
Asia-Pacific – Australia and New Zealand

    Along with New Zealand, one of the world’s most
    sophisticated markets
    Incredibly competitive, strict disclosure requirements, and
    strong consumer protection, solvency and actuarial
    Dominated by several large companies such as Australian
    Mutual Provident, National Australia, and ING (Australia)
 Products and distributions
    The largest product sales in superannuation
    Bank-owned life insurers accounted for 38% of new
    premiums written in 2005

Asia-Pacific – ASEAN

    Both developed and developing economies
    Diversity in ethnic backgrounds
    Already a large number of foreign insurers in the market
 Products and distributions
    Mainly traditional whole life and endowment but with unit-
    linked and annuity business growing rapidly in a few
    Distribution almost exclusively on face-to-face selling by
    part-time, male and female captive agents
    The image of life insurance in some societies or

    Most markets long been hampered by political and
    economic turmoil
    African life insurance figures are dominated by South
       South Africa with the world’s second highest life
       insurance penetration
    Other markets, such as Namibia, Mauritius and Botswana,
    slowly grow.

  Still the least known regional market in the world

Discussion Questions
Discussion Question 1

 Many U.S. life insurers have been reluctant to
 enter international markets.
 Why have they been reluctant historically to
 do so?
 Why do you believe U.S. insurers have begun
 to increase their international activities?
 Do you believe they will succeed?

Discussion Question 2

 In Europe, the direct marketing and
 bancassurance movements have gained
 enormous momentum. In many other
 countries, insurance is still sold through
 personal contact with an agent.
 What do you see as the strengths and
 weaknesses from the consumer’s point of
 view of these three different strategies for
 selling life insurance?


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