Channel NewsAsia

Life insurance sales slow in Q2

The life insurance industry is seeing slower growth in the second quarter of this year. Total weighted premiums fell by 10 per cent compared to a year ago, due mainly to a decrease in annual premium product sales.

SINGAPORE: The life insurance industry is seeing slower growth in the second quarter of this year. Total weighted premiums fell by 10 per cent compared to a year ago, due mainly to a decrease in annual premium product sales.

According to the Life Insurance Association, total weighted premiums in the April to June period came in to S$660.3 million, compared with S$736.2 million in the same period last year. This was dragged down by a drop of 19 per cent in the sales of annual premiums products, which fell to S$450.1 million, compared to S$554.8 million in the same period last year.

LIA attributed this decline to the high base last year. Dr Khoo Kah Siang, President of the LIA, said: "For the first half of this year, there has been a decrease in regular premiums, total weighed new business premiums. This is because there was an increase in the premium for health insurance premiums in 2013, which resulted in the higher recorded total weighted new business premiums for the regular premium business in 2013. But against this background, the total weighted new business sales for 2014 continue to show growth."

Meanwhile, weighted single premium products registered a 19 per cent year-on-year growth to S$210.2 million, compared to the S$181.4 million last year.

Looking ahead, the association said demographic changes in Singapore, such as an emerging affluent class and an ageing population, will fuel need for protection and retirement plans in the future.

For the first half of the year, total weighted premiums improved by 1 per cent to S$1.315 billion, up from S$1.298 billion last year. Weighted single premium products grew to S$378.4million, a 20 per cent growth compared to last year. Meanwhile, sales of annual premium products slowed to S$937.3 million in weighted new business premiums, decreasing by 5 per cent from last year's S$983.8 million.