In charts: economic and insurance outlook 2021

These interactive graphs highlight forecasted economic and insurance trends over the next two years

Following the positive news on a COVID-19 vaccine, the risks to our economic outlook are more balanced. But given weaker economic resilience, we forecast a protracted recovery to 4.7% global growth in 2021 after a 4.1% contraction this year. These four charts illustrate how the global economy and insurance markets are projected to fare in 2021. For more analysis, check out Swiss Re Institute's latest sigma report Rebuilding better: global economic and insurance market outlook 2021/22.

The road to recovery

After a sharp recession this year, a protracted economic recovery is expected in 2021. With a COVID-19 vaccine in sight, the downside risks are less pronounced. But structural pressures remain. Interest rates are set to stay low for longer. Inflation weakness is expected to stay unchanged in the near term but could rise in the medium term.

Replenishing resilience

Global economic resilience, already fragile since the 2008/09 Global Financial Crisis, will decline further by almost 20% in 2020 due to COVID-19. A sustainable recovery requires new policy directions that include targeted fiscal spending with high growth multipliers and more focus on inclusive growth.

Rates hardening in commercial lines

Rate hardening in commercial lines of business has been a main factor supporting the resilience. This momentum is set to continue through next year, underpinned by strong demand amidst rising risk awareness and rising claims.

Source: Marsh and Swiss Re Institute

Non-life and life insurance rebounding

The global non-life insurance sector has withstood this year's recession better than initially expected and will rebound strongly in 2021. The life sector has been harder hit, but growth will rebound next year. Low interest rates will pressure profitability.


​sigma 7/2020 - rebuilding better

Global economic and insurance market outlook 2021/22