Above-average profits in Québec's automobile insurance industry in 2011

Insurance Organization

Montréal - The Autorité des marchés financiers (the AMF) has released its 2011 report on automobile insurance rates (pdf - 4 MB)This link will open in a new windowUpdated on June 13, 2012Rapport annuel 2011 - Tarification en assurance automobile - Autorité des marchés financiers, tabled today in the Québec National Assembly. The report highlights the developments and trends in Québec automobile insurance for 2011.

Positive trend despite lower profits

An analysis of the rates charged by automobile insurers in 2011 shows that they posted lower profits overall than in 2010. The profits represent 12.3% of premiums written in 2011, down from 15.1% in 2010. This can be explained in part by increased payouts following occurrences suffered in 2011, including the flooding in Montérégie and Gatineau and Hurricane Irene. Despite rate reductions granted by insurers over the past few years, the level of premiums written in 2011 remained the same as in 2010.

Despite lower profits, the results indicate that the favourable trend observed over the past decade is continuing. Insurers are maintaining results which exceed historical returns generally expected by insurers since claim frequency remains relatively low notwithstanding the increase observed in 2011.

Replacement insurance

2011 marked the first full year of distribution of the automobile insurance form Q.P.F. No. 5 - Complementary Insurance for Damage to Insured Automobile Form - Replacement Insurance. The report therefore highlights the distribution of replacement insurance by automobile dealers and certified representatives for 2011: Nearly 96,000 replacement insurance policies were sold for a total of $142.6 million in direct premiums.

Good for consumers

Automobile insurance products in Québec continue to be abundant and diversified. The array of products means that consumers can meet their insurance needs. Several factors are behind the competitive nature of this market, including a downward movement in rates for the ninth consecutive year and a growing number of insurers operating in all sectors of automobile insurance. Québec-chartered insurers still dominate the home market, grabbing 64% of the $3.1 billion of automobile insurance premiums written in 2011.

The AMF encourages consumers to ask for bids from different insurers and brokers to be able to compare prices and services. In addition, by comparing insurance premiums and asking for additional information about applicable terms and services offered, consumers help maintain healthy competition in the insurance industry.

More information about automobile insurance in Québec is available in the report (in French only) posted on the AMF website.

The Autorité des marchés financiers (the AMF) is the regulatory and oversight body for Québec's financial sector.

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