Underwriters gain an edge with market insight
Tue 18 Dec 2012
Managing agents are using insightful analysis from Lloyd’s Market Intelligence team to benchmark their performance and make more informed decisions when accessing new markets.
Insurers and brokers are always on the lookout for useful data and analysis on insurance markets around the world, but reliable data is often hard to find and inconsistent with the needs of Lloyd’s specialist business.
However, many managing agents have been benefiting from the services of Lloyd’s Market Intelligence team, who scour the world’s insurance markets for statistics relevant to Lloyd’s.
Market statistics are particularly important for insurers and brokers looking to write new products or access new markets, especially in high-growth economies that are expected to become a much more important source of business in the future.
Entering emerging markets, particularly for casualty lines, takes time and planning, says Darren Powell, active underwriter for Allied World
Syndicate 2232. Powell and his team of underwriters at Syndicate 2232, which was established in 2010 by Allied World Assurance Co., has been using analysis from the Market Intelligence team as it pursues its emerging markets strategy in Asia and Latin America.
“We have used the MI team’s market research and benchmarking analysis when looking at countries like Brazil or when considering opportunities to write new lines of business,” says Powell. “By using good market research and analysis, we can make informed decisions, be a better run business and be more profitable in the long run,” he says.
Powell and his underwriters use market research and benchmarking analysis from the Market Intelligence team in day-to-day underwriting and for strategic planning.
For example, underwriters read a Country Report to get a quick briefing before embarking on a business trip, or use Class Review to benchmark their performance and research new markets. Underwriters also frequently use Lloyd’s compliance tool Crystal to keep track of tax and regulatory issues, as well as market practices, says Powell.
Crystal provides a good summary of what is happening in a market at a given moment in time, however products like Compare Countries and Class Review provide useful analysis for business planning, such as when considering whether to have a local presence in a market, he says.
“Using Market Intelligence we can quickly compare market statistics by class of business,” says Powell. “These are comprehensive products that show where Lloyd’s fits in with a local market and can benchmark syndicate performance with that of Lloyd’s and the competition. There is a huge amount that can be done with these statistics – and we have only just begun to scratch the surface,” he says.
Market Intelligence really comes into its own by helping underwriters understand the limitations of data, says Powell. Statistics from local markets are not always directly comparable with Lloyd’s own definitions and criteria, and underwriters need to know where there are gaps and differences, he says.
“As a new syndicate we have been able to tap a wealth of information through Market Intelligence,” says Powell. “Few companies would have the time or resources to carry out this level of analysis – so it has been a real advantage to be able to access such detailed information,” he says.
The Market Intelligence team are very approachable and keen to reach out to get the market perspective, says Powell. “The team engages with the market to find out which data is most relevant for their business,” he says.
Market Intelligence wants to engage with underwriters and brokers and provide them with more targeted information, says Filip Wuebbeler, Senior Manager, Market Intelligence at Lloyd's. For example, the team recently launched a news alert for European countries, and is working on versions from the Americas and Asia Pacific, he says.
“Once they see what the team can provide, they tend to use our services more and more,” says Wuebbeler.