NU Online News Service, Jan. 9, 9:32 a.m. – The MIB Group Inc., Westwood, Mass. says the U.S. and Canadian life insurers it serves sought information on 11% more individual life applications in December 2001 than they vetted the previous month, and 9% more than they vetted in December 2000.

The fourth quarter was the busiest quarter for life applications in at least two years, MIB says.

“Activity was high in both the U.S. and Canada, and was strong in every age group, including the 60-plus age bracket,” says Fran Marinelli, MIB chief marketing officer. “The strong fourth quarter results may be due in part to the combination of declines in the stock market with the heightened interest in life insurance following the events of September 11.”

MIB is a nonprofit group that collects information on individual life insurance customers for most U.S. and Canadian life and health insurance companies. The group uses search statistics for its own databases to compute its life application activity index.

The life index includes results for companies that account for more than 95% of all U.S. and Canadian individual life premium revenue, MIB says.