Interest rates and claims are still not doing long-term care insurance (LTCI) issuers any favors.
Issuers have to struggle to get rate increases past some state insurance commissioners. Consumers are about as oblivious and strapped for cash as ever. Credit rating analysts look at a block of LTCI business as if it was a large, ugly tumor growing on the side of a life insurer’s head.
And yet, the baby boomers are getting older, and the boomers’ parents have gotten much older. Most boomers now know someone in their own generation who has had to be the caregiver for an aging parent.
Is there any hope?
“It’s going to be a good year,” Newman said.
For a look at some of the other things Newman told the moderator, Catherine Dove, read on.
1. Newman sees strong top-level commitment to LTCI at the insurers still in the market.
Newman said insurers often invite her to events with top-level executives. She said the top executives at the carriers still in the stand-alone LTCI market seem to be strongly committed to the market.
“These companies want business,” Newman said.
2. A few insurers are continuing to increase stand-alone LTCI sales, and several are developing significant new LTCI products.
Newman presented LIMRA data showing that, through the first three quarters of 2014, annualized revenue from new sales of individual LTCI had fallen 25 percent, to $233 million, and the number of new lives covered had fallen 27 percent, to 96,325.
But the number of new lives covered fell just 5 percent at one large issuer, John Hancock, and held steady at another large issuer, Thriven.
LifeSecure let the number of sales there rise 153 percent, to 7,392, and the Knights of Columbus let sales rise 97 percent, to 4,945.
Several companies are developing new worksite products, and several are developing new individual market products, Newman said.