Weekly Dispatch: Nov. 9, 2023

November 9, 2023


PIA Market Trends Survey: Rising premium rates, and other factors indicative of a hard market

Professional insurance agents may be aware that the insurance industry is amid a hard market. This means insureds’ premiums have risen and insurance coverage is more restricted, among other changes. PIA Northeast conducted a survey with its members about these trends in the market. Across personal auto, personal homeowner and commercial liability premiums, roughly 50% of respondents to the 2023 PIA Market Trends Survey have seen increases in premiums.

Warranties vs. insurance: what’s the difference?

Are your clients buying fancy new phones or TVs? Do they know what is entailed when they purchase an extended warranty? They may mistakenly believe that an extended manufacturer’s warranty is an insurance policy. You can help educate them about the difference between a warranty and insurance. There are key differences between the two to keep in mind before your clients purchase either option.

FEMA provides funding for dam safety grant programs

The Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Deanne Criswell announced on Nov. 2 that FEMA, will commit more than $211 million in funding from President Biden’s Investing in America agenda—a key component of Bidenomics—to enhance dam safety efforts across the nation to ensure that communities have the critical infrastructure needed to protect against future disasters and prevent against future flooding.

Moody’s creates private credit rating and research group

According to Reuters, ratings agency Moody’s is creating a unit to research and rate private credit. The global private credit market, with more than $1.3 trillion in assets under management, makes up about 12% of the alternatives market, investment firm BlackRock said in a recent report.

PIANJ offers free membership to veterans

As we honor our country’s veterans this week, PIANJ wants to remind you that the association offers a free year of PIANJ membership for U.S. military veterans who recently earned their insurance licenses and who are starting their own insurance agency in the state of New Jersey. Do you know a U.S. military veteran who is starting an agency? Always-expanding PIA-member benefits include: education; information; PIA Design & Print; networking opportunities; advocacy; agents’ errors-and-omissions and other coverages; and more. If you know a veteran who qualifies for a free year of membership, let him or her know about this offer or contact PIANJ at (800) 424-4244 or via email, so we can reach out to him or her. Remember: If your referral brings in a new PIANJ member (regardless of military status), you can receive $50 in cash or coupons for certain PIA benefits/services.

N.Y.: Attorney general reaches settlement with Lyft and Uber

New York Attorney General Letitia James unveiled two historic settlements valued at a combined $328 million with ride-sharing conglomerates Lyft and Uber on Nov. 1, 2023. These settlements mark the conclusion of extensive investigations into both companies, revealing that their policies and practices unjustly deprived drivers of their rightful earnings, and denied them worker benefits afforded to them under New York state labor laws.

N.Y.: Flood resiliency projects in Clayton completed

Gov. Kathy Hochul announced Nov. 1 the completion of a series of flood resiliency projects in Clayton, Jefferson County. The five completed projects were awarded more than $8.6 million in grant funding through the State’s Lake Ontario Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative. The completed projects will help mitigate the impact of future extreme weather events, improve resiliency of the shoreline and protect popular destinations like the Riverwalk.


N.Y.: DFS releases final cyber regulations, PIA offers guidance

The New York State Department of Financial Services released its official second amendment to the cyber security regulation (23 NYCRR 500) on Nov. 1. To help agents understand all the changes and how they impact their agency, PIA has prepared a step-by-step guide to the amended regulation. The guide contains an analysis of every section of the regulation, who the changes apply to and what changes were made.


House hearing featured PIA-backed bills on FIO repeal

The House Financial Services Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance held a hearing on Nov. 2 entitled, “The Factors Influencing the High Cost of Insurance for Consumers.” In advance of the hearing, PIA submitted testimony for the record. The hearing examined the status of the domestic insurance industry, including recent developments in the property/casualty insurance market that have led to higher costs and lower availability for consumers. Its focus included the increasing cost of insurance, current challenges facing individual state markets and the effects of federal and international regulatory developments.

FIO proceeds with call for climate data

The U.S. Treasury Department’s Federal Insurance Office is preparing to proceed with a revised data collection that will target property insurers regarding climate risks. The data collection announcement and solicitation of public input come despite ongoing concerns that the data collection will be overly burdensome to insurers, will ignore the existing state insurance regulatory infrastructure, and will result in the collection of data that is poorly suited to enabling the federal government to better understand the complex issue of climate risk.


How to interact with difficult customers

Difficult customers are a frequent occurrence in any industry, including the insurance industry. These difficult customers may be dissatisfied the service that was provided, or they convey themselves in a way that one finds disagreeable. Whatever the case, agents still must assist them as best they can. However, it can be daunting to approach a customer who is, at the moment, difficult. PIA Northeast members who would like guidance, can consult Dealing with difficult customers in the QuickSource library. Several articles about managing customer expectations and dealing with positive and negative reviews can be found on PIA Northeast News & Media.

N.Y.: 2024 WC assessment rate published

The New York Workers’ Compensation Board announced in Subject No. 046-1635, the new assessment rate of 9.2% of standard premium to be effective for policies renewing on or after Monday, Jan. 1, 2024. This is a decrease from the 2023 rate of 9.8%. Pursuant to WCL Section 151, the WCB shall annually establish an assessment rate for all employers by Nov. 1 of each year.

Educating insurance agents

N.Y.: Classes that meet the New York State Department of Financial Services’ most recent CE requirements are available online and in private on-site sessions.

Conn./N.J./N.Y.: Companies and how they function, in-person and webinar

Join John Neal, CRM, MBA, and Nikki Sherrill-Wyatt, CIC, SCLA, AIS, AIM, API, AIC, AINS, for a two-day hybrid seminar, 2022-2023 CIC ICO: Insurance Company Operations Institute, on Nov. 15-16, 2023. The in-person part of the event is hosted at the Selective Insurance Co. of America, in Branchville, N.J. This institute will describe how insurance companies function, and how those functions affect insurance agents and risk management professionals. Agents will learn about the important strategic decisions and tactics used in product development, underwriting and other vital company departments. This event has been approved for credits in Connecticut (16 LH), New Jersey (16 GEN) and New York (15 BR, C1, C3, LA, LB, LSB, PA, PC).

Register now

Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023: NJYIP Holiday Reception

Save the date

Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2024: NY-YIP MetroRAP Welcome Reception

Thursday, Feb. 1, 2024: PIANY MetroRAP

March 27-28, 2024: Connecticut Convention

Wednesday, May 8, 2024: NJYIP Golf Open

June 2-4, 2024: PIA New Jersey | PIA New York Annual Conference

Tuesday, June 4, 2024: NJYIP Fun Run to benefit Special Olympics New Jersey

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