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Individual Life Application Activity Falls

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What You Need to Know

  • Activity for people ages 71 and older was down just 0.4%.
  • For people ages 61 through 70, activity was down 9.2%.
  • For all of 2021, growth in application activity for whole life was stronger than growth in activity for term life or universal life products.

For life insurers, year-over-year application activity comparisons are getting to be more difficult — because the market started to rebound so well in late 2020.

MIB Group, a consortium that helps life insurers share some types of underwriting information, says the overall level of individual application activity was 5.9% lower in December 2021 than in December 2020.

That’s mainly because December 2020 was a terrific month, and beating the December 2020 activity level was hard, MIB says.

The December activity drop was just 0.4% for the oldest applicants, who are 71 and older, and highest — 9.2% — for applicants ages 61 through 70.

MIB bases the monthly activity figures on the number of applications that flow through its application-checking systems.

MIB also posts annual activity reports. The 2021 annual activity report shows that whole life policies showed more application growth than term life policies or universal life policies did.

The Details

Here are the activity change figures, broken down by age group, for December:

  • Ages 0–30: down 4.6%.
  • Ages 31–50: down 5.5%.
  • Ages 51–60: down 7.6%.
  • Ages 61–70: down 9.2%.
  • Ages 71 and older: down 0.4%.

Policygenius Price Index

Policygenius, a life insurance web broker, uses its term life pricing information to provide monthly term life price index reports.

The company bases the index on prices for coverage with a 20-year-level premium term.

The lowest price shown is for coverage for a 25-year-old female nonsmoker who wants $250,000 in death benefits; The highest price is for a 55-year-old male smoker who wants $1 million in death benefits.

The company has found the COVID-19 pandemic having surprisingly little effect on the prices insurers send it.

This month, the lowest price in the tables fell to $14.23, from $14.25 in December 2021.

But the highest price, for the 55-year-old male smoker, held steady at $1,021.06.