04 February 2011

German car insurance Prices and premiums are trending up - HUK's rival for the No.1 car insurer spot

German car insurance Prices and premiums are trending up : Premiums in Germany's hard-contested 20 billion euro ($28 billion) motor insurance market are rising, signaling a recovery may at last be taking hold, mutual insurer HUK Coburg said on Thursday. "Prices and premiums are trending up," said a spokesman for HUK, a major non-profit insurer that has heavily influenced the market in recent years, pressuring stock market-listed companies such as Allianz (ALVG.DE).

"We'll have to wait to see if it is lasting," the spokesman said, who has previously cast doubt on predictions of an upturn.

Rising damage claims over the last two winters have reduced the room for insurers to cut prices for car insurance, while the general economic recovery is prompting a pickup in vehicle and goods traffic and hence in the number of automobile accidents.

A return of mild winter weather would probably not be enough to prompt a renewed downtrend in prices, the spokesman said. HUK raised the number of vehicles it insures by 90,000 at the end of last year, bringing its total to 8.77 million.

"The gain was less than in the past but was still a bit of a surprise because premiums had stopped falling," the spokesman said.

Millions of Germans typically switch car insurance providers at the end of each year, searching for lower cost alternatives.

Premiums also rose, HUK said, but declined to give details. The insurer's motor insurance division had premiums of 2.26 billion euros in 2009.

The car insurance market pits listed insurers such as Allianz, Generali (GASI.MI) and AXA (AXAF.PA) against not-for-profit mutual insurers like HUK Coburg.

Premiums in Germany's had been sliding as a result of a stagnating number of insurable cars and a vicious price war among insurers but the country's GDV insurance trade body has predicted premiums would rise in 2010 for the first time in six years.

HUK's rival for the No.1 car insurer spot, Allianz, which insured about 8.44 million vehicles as of the end of 2009, declined to comment on business at the end of last year, saying it planned to reveal details on March 3. (Reporting by Jonathan Gould; Editing by Jon Loades-Carter) ($1=.7257 Euro)

Related Post :

No comments:

Blog Archive