America’s least-respected industries: How does insurance fare?

Producers in certain lines may have some damage control to do, according to the results of a recent Harris poll.

Insurance News


Tobacco companies and giant oil firms may top the list of America’s least-trusted industries, but two other sectors on that list may give producers cause to jump into PR mode.

According to a recent Harris Poll, health and life insurance companies are among the least-trusted companies in the US. Just 7% of the surveyed 2,250 adults told Harris they trusted their health insurance company, while 10% said the same of life insurance companies.

The results represent a 2% decrease in trustworthiness for life insurers and a 4% decrease for health insurance carriers.

More than a third (34%) of those surveyed told Harris health companies should be more regulated by the government, and 6% fewer people said they wanted health insurance this year than in 2013.

The health and life insurance sectors narrowly beat out telemarketing and social media companies, with a 6% approval rating; oil companies with 4%; and tobacco companies with an abysmal 3%.

On the other end of the spectrum, supermarkets, hospitals and online search engines ranked among America’s most-trusted industries, though all experienced a decrease in favor since Harris started recording responses in 2003.

Out of the 19 industries Harris included in the poll, the perception has dropped for 18. The only industry whose approval rating didn’t drop—tobacco—has been holding steady at 3% since last year.

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