Life settlements totaled $6.1 billion in face amount in 2006, up from $5.5 billion in 2005, Conning Research and Consulting Inc. estimates.

“The current limits on life settlement market growth have much more to do with policy availability and consumer education than with provider capacity,” says Scott Hawkins, an analyst at Conning, Hartford.

Conning expects growth of about $1 billion in additional life settlement transaction volume per year “for the foreseeable future,” Conning analysts write.