New, higher long-term care insurance (LTCI) prices have led to a sharp drop in U.S. retail LTCI sales at Manulife Financial Corp., the company says.
Manulife, Toronto (TSX:MFC), says overall LTCI sales at its Boston-based John Hancock Long-Term Care unit increased to $69 million in the third quarter, from $51 million in the third quarter of 2010, because of solid sales at the unit’s Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program, a voluntary LTCI program for federal employees and relatives of federal employees.
Although overall LTCI sales are up, “retail product sales declined 73% in the third quarter of 2011 compared to a year ago, reflecting new business price increases that have been implemented over the past year,” Manulife says.
“A more profitable, lower-risk retail product has been introduced in 47 states since May,” the company says.
John Hancock LTC also “has filed with regulators for premium rate increases on in-force retail and group business, averaging approximately 40% on the majority of our in-force LTC business,” the company says. “To date, approvals of in-force price increases on retail business have been received from 25 states.”
Manulife has put U.S. LTCI products in a category dubbed “products not targeted for growth.” During the company’s earnings call, company executives and analysts spent no time talking about LTCI products.