US commercial rates increase 4% in Q3: MarketScout

Composite Rate for Personal Lines Insurance Rises to Plus 4.5%
October 7, 2019

October 7, 2019 | Business Insurance 

Author: Claire Wilkinson

U.S. commercial property/casualty insurance rates rose 4% on average in the third quarter of 2019, up from 3% in the second quarter, online insurance exchange MarketScout Corp. said Monday.

By industry class, habitational and transportation businesses saw the highest average rate increases at 6and 7.5%, respectively, MarketScout Corp. said.

A “relatively benign” third quarter for property insurers helped slow the rapid pace of increases, but “property rates continue to trend upward,” Richard Kerr, CEO of MarketScout,  said in a statement.

“Liability and other lines also continue the upward trend. Workers compensation rates are still down, but we do see signs indicating workers compensation rates may move up in the fourth quarter of 2019,” Mr. Kerr said.

Commercial auto rates increased 6.5%, while commercial property, umbrella/excess and directors and officers liability increased 4.5% in the quarter, and business interruption and professional liability rates were up 4%, according to MarketScout.

All other lines tracked by Dallas-based MarketScout saw smaller increases, except for workers compensation, where rates fell 1.5%.

Small accounts – those with up to $25,000 in premium – saw a rate hike of 4.5% in the third quarter, as did medium accounts – those with $25,001 to $250,000 in premium. Large accounts – those with $250,001 to $1 million in premium – were up 3.5%, as were jumbo accounts, which have more than $1 million in premium.