Subdued Markets – Lively Mergers & Acquisitions

Willis Re 1st View Report

Arlington, VA (Apr. 12, 2018) – Willis Re, the reinsurance division of Willis Towers Watson, the leading global advisory, broking and solutions company, has issued its latest 1st View renewals report. Key findings include:

  • 1 April renewals saw the continuation of a broadly flat pricing environment
  • Rapid reload of Insurance Linked Securities (ILS) funds following initially overstated Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria (HIM) losses
  • Continued capital oversupply despite 2017 losses
  • Some modest increases in reinsurance purchases allied to underlying growth delivering real premium growth
  • Dynamic change in reinsurance mergers and acquisitions (M&A); large primary carriers have re-entered the reinsurance market, driven by disruptive competition in personal lines and profitability challenges in life insurance
  • Insurance companies continue to assess the impact of reinsurance buying to support earnings and capital management, with the value of reinsurance seen as higher than it has been in recent years.

James Kent, Global CEO, Willis Re, said: “The pricing environment for the April renewals has closely mirrored that of the 1 January placements, with pricing dampened by the continued impact of plentiful capacity from both traditional and ILS markets, and with the latter’s impact most apparent on property catastrophe pricing.

“M&A in the sector, driven by large primary insurers returning to the reinsurance space, has also helped to keep capital plentiful, meaning that it remains a buyer’s market. However, reinsurers can take some solace from the fact that the annual price declines of recent years have abated. We are also seeing a pick-up in demand as a result of exposure growth, plus an increase in buying activity, most noticeably from some large global clients.”

The Willis Re 1st View report is a thrice yearly publication including specific commentary on key trends throughout the world’s major reinsurance classes and regions.

About Willis Re

One of the world’s leading reinsurance brokers, Willis Re is known for its world-class analytics capabilities, which it combines with its reinsurance expertise in a seamless, integrated offering that can help clients increase the value of their businesses. Willis Re serves the risk management and risk transfer needs of a diverse, global client base that includes all of the world’s top insurance and reinsurance carriers as well as national catastrophe schemes in many countries around the world. The broker’s global team of experts offers services and advice that can help clients make better reinsurance decisions and negotiate optimum terms.

About Willis Towers Watson

Willis Towers Watson (NASDAQ:WLTW) is a leading global advisory, broking and solutions company that helps clients around the world turn risk into a path for growth. With roots dating to 1828, Willis Towers Watson has over 40,000 employees serving more than 140 countries. We design and deliver solutions that manage risk, optimize benefits, cultivate talent, and expand the power of capital to protect and strengthen institutions and individuals. Our unique perspective allows us to see the critical intersections between talent, assets and ideas – the dynamic formula that drives business performance. Together, we unlock potential. Learn more at

SOURCE: Willis Towers Watson

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