Hoovering up unwanted insurance is now a $700bn global industry

Oliver Gill
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Continental Europe was run-off insurance's fastest growing market (Source: Getty)

The global insurance run-off market has gone from strength to strength in the last year and is worth more than $700bn (£510bn), according to research released today.

The North American market for run-off insurance liabilities is worth $350bn, almost equal to the rest of world combined – worth $380bn.

Employers' liability and work compensation liabilities are most likely to be disposed of over the next year, accountants from PwC said. Britain will be the second most active market, after continental Europe.

More than half of the survey respondents say run-off and legacy management is a priority for top execs, PwC research found.

Read more: Lloyd's of London to open office in Brussels in time for Brexit

“It is clear from our survey that the global run-off market remains extremely buoyant and there is growing recognition among (re)insurers of the benefits of proactively managing legacy books," said PwC head of market initiatives and industries Dan Schwarzmann.

"This is complemented by an increasingly sophisticated and well-capitalised group of run-off consolidators that have recently been supplemented by a number of new entrants, who are eager to provide exit solutions for owners of discontinued business."

He continued: "The results of our previous surveys have highlighted Continental Europe becoming an increasingly active run-off market and 2017 has seen a step change in this region which looks set to continue."

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