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Insurance Markets Viewpoints


QFINANCE viewpoints provide you with the distilled thoughts of finance leaders and experts, outlining their current thinking on the crucial issues and challenges facing finance managers, entrepreneurs and business executives. The contributions are drawn from an array of practitioners and thinkers from the world of finance and business.

  • Derivatives Regulation Threatens to Damage Pension Funds and Pensioners across Europe
    by Ben Gunnee
    Ben Gunnee is European director of the Mercer Sentinel Group, a specialist group within Mercer’s investments business that advises clients on investment operations and investment execution, including custodian reviews, investment manager operational due diligence, transition manager operations, and transaction cost analysis. Based in London, he is responsible for the group’s overall business strategy within Europe and is part of its global...
  • Global Reinsurance: Narrowing the Gap
    by Kai-Uwe Schanz
    This article was first published in Quantum magazine.There is a real possibility that the global reinsurance market, a business that generates US$200 billion in annual premiums, will be significantly reshaped in the next two decades as the economic balance of power shifts towards the emerging markets.Reinsurance today is still dominated by the large European-based players such as Munich Re, Swiss Re, and Lloyd’s, and by Bermuda-based providers...
  • Pension Funds—The Dangers of Taking Off-Benchmark Foreign Exchange Risk
    by Mark Hogg
    If you are investing in a foreign asset or basket of assets, whether you like it or not your investment return is going to come from two different sources. You will see a return or a loss on the underlying asset, of course. But when you sell that asset you will also see a gain or a loss on the translation back into your home currency. A UK investor buying Apple also buys exposure to the dollar, whether they are aware of this or not. When you are...
  • Premium Prospects
    by James White
    This article was first published in Quantum magazine.As the world’s economies show initial signs of recuperation and confidence in future earnings growth starts to return, James White examines how the insurance and reinsurance sector has been resolute in the face of the financial crisis and identifies some of the opportunities that lie ahead.
  • Rushing Through Complexity: Solvency II
    by Marc Beckers
    This article was first published in Quantum magazine.The introduction of a risk-based approach to required capital across Europe is causing serious concern throughout the insurance industry. The impact of the new Solvency II regulations on the available capacity and cost of insurance was cited as one of their three most serious concerns by 42% of respondents to a recent poll by the Federation of European Risk Managers Associations.One worry is...
  • The Global Risk Map and the Current Credit Crunch
    by Peter, Lord Levene
    Peter Levene started his career in the UK defense industry with United Scientific Holdings. He was then appointed personal adviser to Defence Secretary Michael Heseltine in the Ministry of Defence and later permanent secretary in the role of Chief of Defence Procurement. Subsequently he held a number of government posts, as adviser to the Secretary of State for the Environment; to the President of the Board of Trade; and to the Chancellor of the...
  • The Role of Insurance in Bringing Resilience to Societies Challenged by Global Warming
    by David Bresch
    The key point to grasp is that for every reinsurer, the nature of the game has to be long-term. You have to take a long-term view of risk, since this is fundamental to the idea of insuring insurers and large corporates against specific risks for moderately long periods. Much of what stood against sustainability—and which the whole sustainability effort was partly aimed at redressing—was the myopic dash after short-term profits regardless, for...
  • Toward a Deeper Understanding of Risk in the Insurance Sector
    by Alex McNeil
    Alex McNeil is the Maxwell professor of mathematics at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh. He was formerly assistant professor at ETH Zurich. Professor McNeil has a BSc from Imperial College, London, and a PhD in mathematical statistics from Cambridge University. He has published papers in leading statistics, econometrics, finance, and insurance mathematics journals and is a regular speaker at international risk management conferences. He is...
  • Yet Another Nail in the Final Salary Scheme Coffin
    by Tony Clare
    Tony Clare is a pensions partner at Deloitte’s North West office. He has over 22 years’ experience in the sector and is an associate of the Chartered Insurance Institute and a fellow of the Pensions Management Institute. Working across all industries in both the public and private sectors, Tony leads teams advising on transactions and pensions strategy as part of overall reward reviews. He has helped many clients deal with transitions from...

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