(Westwood, Mass. – August 22, 2005) North American application activity for individually underwritten life insurance declined -3.9% in July, year-over-year, according to the MIB Life Indexsm. It was the Index�s sixth consecutive monthly year-over-year decline in the past seven months. On a year-to-date basis, July application activity was off -3.3% for North America; -3.4% and -2.8% for the U.S. and Canada, respectively. Application volumes June-over-July 2005 were off -6.0% in North America; the fourth straight year of declining activity for this monthly interval, each of which was in the minus five-to-six percent range.
U.S. application activity declined -3.9% in July, year-over-year, for all ages combined. July�s year-over-year declines were seen across all three age groups: -4.6%, -3.5% and -1.6% for age groups 0-44, 45-59 and 60+, respectively. Year-to-date, U.S. applications ran -3.4% below that of the same period 2004 for all ages combined. Demographically, only the 60+ age group ran ahead of 2004 year-to-date levels, up +1.1%.
Canadian application activity declined -3.7% in July, year-over-year, for all ages combined. In contrast to the U.S., applications in Canada declined more in the 0-44 and 60+ age groups year-over-year, off -4.7% and -5.1%, respectively, than in the 45-59 age group, off -1.0% versus July 2004. Year-to-date, Canadian activity was -2.8% below that of the same period 2004 for all ages combined.
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About the MIB Life Index
The MIB Life Index is the life insurance industry’s timeliest measure of application activity across the U.S. Released to the media each month, the Index is based on the number of searches life member company underwriters perform on the MIB Checking Service database. Since the vast majority of individually underwritten life premium dollars in North America include an MIB search as a routine underwriting requirement, the MIB Life Index provides a reasonable means to estimate new business activity.
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