Insurance Sector

Health Premiums Go Up by 6%

Health Minister Nicola Roxon Health Minister Nicola Roxon announced that private health insurance premiums will go up by an average of 6.02% on April 1. She said she had written to several large funds in this regards and had challenged their request for larger premium rises.

"Without that close scrutiny, premium rises would have been higher for up to eight million Australians," she said.

"This year's increase is the result of increased benefits paid to patients, rising health service costs, and investment losses from the global financial crisis."

Insurance watchdog confronts wrong info

Inadequate or wrong information regarding insurance policies and consequent failure of consumers to get the benefits are major issues facing the Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority (IRDA), headquartered at Hyderabad.

The genesis of the problem arises out of the various Unit Linked Insurance Plans (ULIPs) sold by public and private insurance companies. With the insurance industry opening up to private players since 2000, there has been fierce competition for getting in as many people as possible to invest with the insurance industry with various incentives and promises, most of which are either false or misleading.

'We may bring more rules to reduce mis-selling'

Insurance, like other financial businesses, is going through tough times. After a high growth phase over the last few years, the pace has tempered down, although the number of companies in the insurance business has increased along with fierce competition for the market pie. Jandhyala Hari Narayan, chairman, Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority (Irda), who took over six months ago, has been instrumental in bringing some changes during the trying times. He spoke to DNA Money's Nandini Goswami on the immediate concerns, growth prospects and challenges before the insurance sector. Excerpts:

How does global meltdown augur for the domestic insurance sector?

LIC launches new money back plan 'Jeevan Varsha'

LIC launches new money back plan 'Jeevan Varsha' After the success of Jeevan Astha, a well-thought insurance scheme, the state run Insurance major Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) on Saturday launched yet another money back plan, Jeevan Varsha, a close ended guaranteed addition money back policy.

The plan, that offers survival benefits for every three years, is going to start from February 16 and close on March 31 with two policy terms of 9 years and 12 years. LIC Zonal Manager (East) R. R. Dash expects good response to the plan and said that LIC has set a target to earn Rs 1,500 crore premium from the new policy.

Swiss Re chief Jacques Aigrain resigns

Zurich - Jacques Aigrain, the head of Swiss Re, the world's second largest re-insurer which suffered huge losses in 2008, has resigned his post, the company announced Thursday. He will be succeeded by current deputy CEO, Stefan Lippe.

Lippe, a German national, has been with Swiss Re for 25 years.

Earlier this month, the re-insurer said it had managed to raise capital, including a 3 billion-Swiss-franc (2.58 billion dollars)- investment from US financier Warren Buffet.

The group was considering taking another 2 billion from other investors.

The capital was needed in light of losses over 2008 reaching a whopping 1 billion francs, with the company now struggling to maintain its AA credit rating.

IDBI Fortis Life Insurance launches “Homesurance Protection Plan’

IDBI Fortis Life Insurance launches “Homesurance Protection Plan’