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sigma 4/2020: World insurance: riding out the 2020 pandemic storm

The world economy is in the grips of the deepest recession since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

The world economy is in the grips of the deepest recession since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The insurance markets will contract this year, with the advanced markets leading the way. However, the magnitude of the pullback will be similar to that seen during the global financial crisis of 2008-09, even though this year's economic contraction will be much more severe. Global life premium volumes are forecast to shrink by 6% in 2020, with most weakness in savings products. The non-life sector will be more robust, with near flat growth.

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World insurance: regional review and outlook

The insurance industry is showing resilience in face of the COVID-19-led economic downturn.
Jerome Jean Haegeli, Group Chief Economist, Swiss Re

Unlike for the global economy, we expect a strong V-shaped recovery in insurance premiums, with a return to around 3% positive growth in both life and non-life premiums in 2021. We project that total premium volumes (life and non-life combined) will be back at pre-crisis levels over the course of next year. The emerging markets, in particular China, will lead the comeback.

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sigma World insurance: riding out the 2020 pandemic storm

​World insurance series

The world insurance sigma covers premiums written in the global primary insurance industry. Published annually, it has become one of the fixtures of the sigma programme since 1968, the publication's inaugural year. This page gives quick access to all the resources.

This is how the insurance industry will fare after the pandemic

The insurance industry is set to recover faster than the wider economy in the wake of the global pandemic, despite the fact that the two generally move in parallel over the long term.

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