Manitoba Public Insurance holds the line on rates in 2010-11

December 4, 2009 – Most Manitoba vehicle owners will pay the same or less for auto insurance next year, Manitoba Public Insurance announced today.

This is the 11th year in 12 that Manitoba Public Insurance has held the line on basic Autopac rates, as approved today by the Public Utilities Board (PUB).

The approved rate application – which was filed with the PUB last June – results in 333,290 passenger vehicle owners, 18,000 commercial vehicles, 2,900 motorcycles, 4,300 public vehicles, 72,000 trailers and 49,000 off-road vehicles paying less for Basic Autopac next year. The average passenger vehicle premium will fall by $2 to $886.

Of the 45 per cent of Manitobans who will pay more, most will face increases of less than $20. Because of staggered renewal dates, some vehicle owners will not pay the new rates until February 2011.

The PUB also ruled that the public auto insurers’ Rate Stabilization Reserve (RSR) for basic insurance should be within a target range of $77-$154 million. This range is reflective of 10 per cent to 20 per cent of written premiums, stated the ruling.

“I’m pleased based on the evidence which was presented, the PUB choose to significantly increase the upper limit of its RSR target,” Manitoba Public Insurance CEO/President Marilyn McLaren said today.

Today’s positive ruling also comes in the wake of the ever-challenging investment market and the launching of several major projects, explained McLaren.

Manitoba Public Insurance’s successful auto theft strategy – launched in 2005 – has resulted in total theft decreasing more than 60 per cent since 2004. Auto theft in Manitoba has dropped more than 40 per cent last fiscal year.

“The resulting drop in auto theft has saved Manitoba Public Insurance and its ratepayers about $60 million in theft claims costs since ’05,” said McLaren.

While next year’s rates will see no overall rate decrease/increase, some customers will pay more due to adjustments applied to various rating groups. Most vehicles will have their premiums change by less than $20 up or down.

Motorcycles (excluding mopeds and motor scooters) will experience an overall 4.9 per cent increase. However, 30.8 per cent will experience a rate decrease – most of which is for motorcycles registered in Winnipeg. Moped and motor scooter owners will experience a 25 per cent increase. The claims costs attributed to these vehicles have been significantly greater than the average applied for premium of $194.

About Manitoba Public Insurance

Manitoba Public Insurance is a non-profit Crown Corporation that has provided basic automobile coverage since 1971. Our services are available throughout Manitoba in claim centres and Customer Service centres.