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Singapore's life insurance business in Q2 lifted by non-linked products

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The life insurance industry in Singapore recorded a 20 per cent year-on-year rise in total weighted new business premiums to S$844.9 million in the second quarter ended June 30, 2016.

THE life insurance industry in Singapore recorded a 20 per cent year-on-year rise in total weighted new business premiums to S$844.9 million in the second quarter ended June 30, 2016, lifted by sales of endowment and Integrated Shield Plans (IPs), among others.

The Life Insurance Association Singapore (LIA) said on Wednesday the significant growth in Q2 can be attributed to new product launches and heightened promotional activities by insurers, resulting in an overall increase in uptake of non-linked products including endowment, whole life, universal life policies, as well as IPs and IP riders.

Weighted new business sales of single-premium non-linked products rose 102 per cent in Q2 to S$230.2 million. This growth was partly offset by the 25 per cent fall in weighted new business premiums of single-premium linked products at S$51.9 million.

Correspondingly, weighted new business sales of single-premium products rose 54 per cent to S$282.1 million in Q2.

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Weighted new business sales of annual premium products for the quarter edged up 8 per cent to S$562.8 million.

In the first half of 2016, total weighted new business premiums went up 13 per cent to S$1.52 billion, lifted by Q2 figures.

For the first six months of the year, new health insurance premiums, excluding the MediShield Life premiums, totalled S$106 million. Of these, S$89 million or 84 per cent were IP and IP riders, while the remaining 16 per cent comprised other medical plans and riders.

In Q1 2016, total new health-insurance premiums came in at S$47 million. On a quarter-on-quarter basis, they rose 25 per cent to S$59 million in Q2.

As at end-June, LIA said 2.86 million lives are covered by health insurance with total premiums amounting to S$1.32 billion.

In H1 2016, banks contributed the bulk of new business by weighted premiums at 41 per cent, while tied agents accounted for 36 per cent and financial advisers comprised 19 per cent. The remaining 4 per cent is attributable to products sold without intermediaries.

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