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LIMRA: Strong Indexed Universal Life Sales Drive U.S. Individual Life Insurance Premium Growth in Second Quarter 2018

WINDSOR, Conn., Aug. 29, 2018 — With a 15 percent increase, indexed universal life (IUL) new annualized premium propelled U.S. individual life insurance new premium to grow 2 percent in the second quarter 2018, according to the LIMRA U.S. Retail Individual Life Insurance Sales Survey.

Total life insurance new annualized premium was flat in the first half of 2018, compared to the first six months of 2017.

“After three consecutive quarters of declines, individual life insurance sales growth rebounded in the second quarter of 2018,” said Ashley Durham, associate research director, LIMRA Insurance Research. “Indexed universal life drove the comeback with a 15 percent increase over second quarter of 2017.”

In the second quarter, the number of policies sold was level with the second quarter 2017. As a result, policy count dropped 1 percent for the first half of the year.

Universal life (UL) new annualized premium increased 2 percent in the second quarter.  In the first half of 2018, UL premium was flat compared to last year. Total UL market share is 37 percent.

IUL recorded its seventh consecutive quarter of new premium growth with more than half of IUL manufacturers reporting growth. Year-to-date, IUL new premium rose 12 percent. IUL represented 64 percent of UL premium and 23 percent of all individual life insurance premium.

Lifetime Guarantee Universal Life (LTGUL) declined 12 percent in the second quarter. Half of LTGUL writers reported decreased sales in the second quarter. Year-to-date LTGUL fell 18 percent, compared with prior year.  LTGUL represents 17 percent of UL sales and 6 percent of total life premiums.

Variable universal life (VUL) new annualized premium increased 2 percent in the second quarter and 6 percent year-to-date. Half of the VUL writers saw growth in the second quarter.  VUL held a 6 percent market share of total individual life insurance in the first half of 2018.

Whole Life (WL) new annualized premium increased 2 percent in the second quarter after three consecutive quarters of declines. Seven of the top 10 companies reported growth in the quarter. Year-to-date, WL premium growth was flat. WL premium represented 36 percent of the total life market in the first six months of 2018.

Term life insurance new premium grew 1 percent in the second quarter, compared with 2017. In the first half of 2018, premium growth was flat, compared with prior year results. Term life market share was 21 percent in the first six months of the year. 

LIMRA’s Second Quarter 2018 U.S. Individual Life Insurance Sales Survey represents approximately 80 percent of the U.S. individual life insurance annualized premium market.

View the latest data table on U.S. life insurance sales trends. For more statistics, visit the newly updated Data Bank.

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LIMRA, a worldwide research, consulting and professional development organization, is the trusted source of industry knowledge, helping more than 850 insurance and financial services companies in 64 countries. Visit LIMRA at www.limra.com.