Applications for individual life insurance in the U.S. were down 2% in August compared to a year earlier, the MIB Group Inc. reports.

For those aged 44 and under, August 2008 applications declined by 4.8% year over year, while those ages 45 to 59 were flat at -0.1% and ages 60+ were up 7.6%, extending a 17-month growth trend for that age group.

For the year as a whole, U.S. life application activity as of the end of August was off 2.2% compared to the same period of 2007, says MIB, Braintree, Mass.