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New web portal to compare life insurance products

CONSUMERS are now able to compare more than 200 life insurance products that are available on the retail market through an online aggregator, compareFIRST (, in a few easy steps.

Launched on Tuesday, the user-friendly web portal allows consumers to drag-and-drop to compare key features and premiums of four classes of products - term life insurance, whole life insurance, endowment policies, as well as a new suite of basic life insurance products known as direct purchase insurance (DPI).

Premiums of DPIs are lower than for comparable life insurance products as DPI is sold without financial advice, so no commissions are charged, said the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

General information on a fifth class of products - investment-linked plans - will be included online, although no comparisons can be made.

In the case of term life products, consumers can compare premiums, death benefits and the total distribution costs.

For whole life products which are more complex, comparisons will encompass more information, including their surrender values and a snapshot of the benefit illustrations.

The web aggregator and DPI are part of the recommendations made by the Financial Advisory Industry Review (FAIR) panel in 2013. They are a collaborative effort by the MAS, together with industry partners - the Life Insurance Association Singapore (LIA) and the Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE)- to encourage greater efficiency in the distribution of life insurance and investment products and also empower consumers to make informed decisions.