Japanese insurers to slash premiums as policyholders live longer

Trend could have reverse effect on another area of insurance, analysts say

Japanese insurers to slash premiums as policyholders live longer

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

Nippon Life Insurance Co. will join other Japanese insurers in lowering life insurance premiums as payouts decline due to policyholders having longer lives, company officials have said.

Premiums could decrease by up to 20% for contracts signed in April or beyond, Japan Today reported. This is due to the first change in the market’s benchmark table for mortality rates and life expectancy in 11 years.

The table showed improved mortality rates, or the annual number of deaths per 1,000 individuals, across all age brackets. For example, the mortality rate for men aged 40 fell from 1.48 to 1.18, while the rate for women of the same age decreased from 0.98 to 0.88.

Aside from Nippon Life, Sony Life Insurance Co will also cut premiums. Fees are expected to decrease by 14.6% for 30-year-old men and 3.7% for women of the same age. Meanwhile, Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance will reduce its premiums for collective life insurance contracts by up to 24% beginning April.

Tokio Marine & Nichido Life Insurance, Mitsui Sumitomo Aioi Life Insurance, and Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Himawari Life Insurance are also expected to decrease premiums.

Insurers in other markets in the region, such as Hong Kong, are also recalibrating their rates due to higher life expectancy.

While life insurance premiums are on a downward trend due to increased longevity, analysts say that this will have a reverse effect on health insurance premiums, as elderly people are more likely to make claims for their increasing health problems.

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