NU Online News Service, Dec. 15, 2004, 5:10 p.m. EST

Life insurers and annuity issuers may try to get more use out of their old computers in 2005.[@@]

TowerGroup, Needham, Mass., a consulting firm, makes that prediction in its annual financial services information technology spending forecast report.

Banks, securities firms and insurers will spend about $365 billion on computers, networks and other technology in 2005, the firm predicts.

Spending at U.S. property-casualty insurers may rise slightly, but life insurers and annuity issuers will try to hold their spending flat by using the technology they already have, TowerGroup says.