Life insurance branch of Hartford now acquired by Prudential

insurance industry report

The purchase was made for a reported $615 million in cash. Prudential Financial Inc. has announced that it has purchased the Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. individual life insurance business for a cash total of $615 million, adding greater substance to its American operations as its rival works to shed excess weight. It is believed that the deal will close at or near the beginning of 2013. According to a statement from Hartford, this will give it the opportunity to help free up close to $1 billion in capital that…

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Life insurance policies are frequently unclaimed

Life insurance

Policyholders are being advised to take care when naming their beneficiaries. Over the last while, concerns have been growing over the number of life insurance companies that are not paying off the policies to beneficiaries when the policyholders die. The problem is that many beneficiaries don’t realize that they hold this position. Many consumers are failing to tell their loved ones when they take out a life insurance policy or don’t tell them that they are the beneficiaries. This makes it far more challenging for the insurers to make sure…

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Towers Watson research indicates life insurance companies suffering from low interest rates

Life Insurance

The current economic environment is causing significant strain on the books of insurers. Data from Towers Watson is showing that as the American interest rates have reached the lowest points that have been seen since the years following World War II, North American life insurance company CFOs – especially those that have the greatest exposure level to products with a fixed rate – are finding that this environment is weighing heavily on their finances. The Life Insurance CFO Survey: Low Interest Rate Environment report was just released by the research…

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Prudential Insurance reaches settlement with Insurance Departments in seven states

Seven states have announced that they have reached a settlement with Prudential Insurance Company of America as well as a number of its affiliate companies. According to Michael Consedine, the insurance commissioner from Pennsylvania, there were concerns raised over the practices at Prudential over the death benefit payments for beneficiaries of life insurance policies following an exam performed by several states. However, he went on to say that they appreciate the willingness of Prudential to “to reach a settlement that includes changing its business practices to better locate beneficiaries. This…

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Imperial Holdings targeted by federal insurance regulators after allegations of fraud

Imperial Holdings has become the target of a federal criminal investigation after insurance regulators caught wind of allegations concerning the life insurance branch of the company – Imperial Finance and Trading. The investigation applies only to the company’s life insurance premium finance business and no other aspect of the company. A multitude of class action lawsuits have been filed against Imperial Holdings since September of last year. Many of these lawsuits are coming from shareholders who claim that the company is committing fraud. Federal regulators seized control of the company’s…

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Forecasts for the 2012 life insurance marketplace

Now that 2011 is coming to a close, life insurers are looking ahead to the new year to try to find out what they can expect from their near future. Though this process is a very cloudy one, as it is impossible to make precise forecasts about the way this market segment will perform, it is still important to try to get an image of what the future may hold. Among the more common predictions are the following: • A larger number of consumers will be starting to think about…

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CSC announces the creation of the Insurance Cybersecurity Advisory Council

The Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC) has announced that it has created an Insurance Cybersecurity Advisory Council to assist in the creation of technology strategies and best practices for property and casualty insurers, life insurance companies, and annuity providers, so that they can more effectively control their risk of cyber attacks. This new Council is made up of IT and business executives from a wide range of different insurance companies and will work with the CSC in the promotion of awareness of the issue, and to help to educate the industry…

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New death benefit battle rages on with life insurance companies

Insurance companies are now facing a new battle in the challenge for data management as state regulators are now requiring that they verify their life insurance policies against the data from the Social Security Death Master File. This is only the most recent of several changes that have been made by state regulators that are designed to help to identify life insurance policy beneficiaries by working with the Social Security Death Master File and checking it against the records for the insurance policies. While the actual regulations for this effort…

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Mutual Life of Massachusetts approves $1.33 billion in dividends for consumers

Mutual Life Insurance, one of the largest insurers in Massachusetts, has announced that it will pay $1.33 billion in dividends to policyholders in 2012. The dividend is a long-standing tradition for the company, extending back to 1860 when it was first introduced. Last year, the company paid out more than $105 million. This year’s large sum is due to a number of factors, including growth in the life insurance market and less competition overall. The insurer will be doling out the money throughout 2012 to eligible policyholders. Customers that have…

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Des Moines opts back into self insurance program to cut costs

Health insurance for city workers in Des Moines, Iowa, is becoming less expensive. Earlier this week, the City Council moved to make a switch back to a self-insurance system for its employee’s health plans. This is the first time since 2003 the city has opted to participate in such a system. City officials hope that the change will help save money on policies across the board. They expect it will also save taxpayers money – to the tune of $1million annually. The City Council is currently expanding their efforts to…

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