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Property & Casualty Market Outlook 2017

Photo of graphs showing insurance trends.

Property and Casualty (P&C) insurance tends to be one of the most important items that businesses review on an annual basis. At Scott, our clients often ask us to predict how their insurance costs will change each year. While no two businesses are exactly alike and many factors go into the pricing of insurance policies, we can make a number of predictions based on the current state of the insurance market. 

2016 In Review

Despite flat or declining investment returns for some insurance companies, 2016 was generally a buyer’s market for property and casualty insurance. Market capacity and competition among insurance companies helped drive prices down for many businesses. Many commercial insurance buyers experienced single to low double-digit rate decreases across a range of insurance lines with auto coverage being the major exception.

2017 P&C Insurance Trends

So far in 2017, outside of auto liability, businesses have continued to see premium reductions on their commercial insurance. Many experts believe this will continue, although reductions may not be as great as those seen in recent years. Insurers are facing a changing dynamic with evolving regulations, low interest rates, increased automation, and rising risks of cyber and privacy threats. These conditions are challenges, but they are also opportunities for growth that are transforming the way businesses operate and their need to mitigate risk with insurance products. Reinsurance rates are at an all-time low and businesses will continue to benefit from increasing market capacity in the form of new markets competing for business and broader terms and conditions.
Overall, the P&C insurance market remains relatively stable in an ever-changing environment.  This is welcome news for an industry that is predicated on providing financial relief when disaster strikes.
To examine some of the more popular insurance lines and their pricing outlook in detail, download the 2017 P&C Market Outlook.
Scott Insurance is here to help your organization find the appropriate insurance coverage. Contact a Scott Risk Advisor today to discuss your unique needs.

Written by Michelle Sullivan

Michelle joined Scott in 2017 with more than a decade of industry experience and a background in Management and Professional Liability.  In her role as Vice President of Marketing, Michelle serves Scott clients by ensuring they have the best coverage structure and most competitive premium terms available in the market.  She monitors market changes and industry trends to effectively negotiate with insurance carriers on behalf of Scott clients. Prior to joining Scott, Michelle served as a Client Executive at Marsh & McLennan Agency, LLC, where she focused on overall risk strategy and placement for large middle market accounts.

American Health Care Act passes the House, faces uphill battle in Senate

Healthcare Reform

After months of hand wringing and arm twisting, the GOP goal of repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act (ACA) passed its first legislative test today in the House of Representatives.  The American Health Care Act (AHCA) was narrowly approved by the House today in a vote of 217-213.  The bill received no democratic support.
This vote comes 41 days after the bill was pulled from the floor on March 24 when the GOP realized they didn’t have enough votes for the bill to pass.  Since then there have been two amendments to the AHCA that flipped enough votes to result in passage today.  

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The Healthcare Landscape – Part Two Paradigm Shift: Understanding the Competitive Advantage of Health

The video below is the second installment in our series sharing highlights from the Business North Carolina 2017 Healthcare Round Table event that we hosted in our Greensboro office last month.  The full discussion is featured in the May issue of Business North Carolina Magazine.

In this video, Sean Willoughby-Ray, Benefits Practice Lead/Vice President, discusses how health is a competitive advantage –  for individuals and businesses.  

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Protect Your Business from Cyber Extortion

When a technology company was hit by a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack by a hacker who had gained control of one of its critical control panels, it was asked to be paid in exchange for returning control to its operations. The company chose not to comply with the extortionists and instead worked to recover its account by changing passwords. Unfortunately, the hackers had created backup logins to the panel and started randomly deleting files once they saw the company’s actions. This example of cyber extortion, unfortunately, put the company out of business.

Extortion as a result of a cyber attack is becoming more and more common for all business types and sizes. One reason for the increase in incidents is that end-user software like Cryptolocker has commoditized the malware industry, making it accessible to a wider variety of criminals and less-skilled hackers.

Cyber criminals, for the purposes of extortion, can threaten to shut down computer systems or erase data, infect a company with a virus, publish private information or personally identifiable information on customers or employees, institute a denial-of-service attack or take over social media accounts. 

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The Healthcare Landscape – Part One The Pharmacy Problem: Dealing With the Dramatic Increase in Pharmacy Costs

Last month, Scott Benefit Services hosted the Business North Carolina 2017 Health Care Round Table in Greensboro.  Sean Willoughby-Ray, Benefits Practice Lead/Vice President, along three other healthcare industry professionals representing Premier Inc., The Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University, and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, shared insights into the future of healthcare in North Carolina and the impact on the state’s economy.

The video below is the first in a three-part series that we will share in the coming weeks highlighting the discussions from the roundtable event.  In this video, Sean Willoughby-Ray and Mitch Perry, Senior VP and CFO of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, discuss some of the issues surrounding the dramatic increase in pharmacy costs, especially specialty medications.   

With pharmacy costs expected to account for up to 50% of an employer’s healthcare spend within the next five years, employers must focus on their pharmacy benefit challenges today.  Contact Scott to discover how we can help you take control of your organization’s health risks and better manage your medical and pharmacy spend.