The last three months of the financial year see a lot of activity in the life insurance industry. The sales of life insurance policies peak in the month of March. As per a research report on Insurance by Emkay Global Financial Services, after two months of slow growth, the life insurance industry’s growth momentum picked up in March 2022, with retail weighted received premium (RWRP) growing by 11.9 per cent YoY.
The good show of March 2022 led to FY22 RWRP growth of 15.7 per cent YoY for the sector and 21.9 per cent YoY for the private sector.
Importantly, compared with the pre-Covid base, the private sector RWRP two-year CAGR in FY22 came in at 14.5 per cent vs. a meager 1.6 per cent for LIC, resulting in the private sector RWRP market share increasing by 5.7 per cent in two years to 62.9 per cent in FY22.
Going into FY23, Emkay Global Financial Services expects overall RWRP growth to be nearly 12-13 per cent YoY, with the private sector growing in the teens and LIC growing in the high-single digits.
The report continues to state that the medium-term trend remains intact with private listed life insurers poised to strengthen their position. For the life insurance industry, short-term disruptions have little impact on business and should be ignored, unless they alter the long-term story. And, the long-term story of these private life insurers, that they are sustainably gaining market share from LIC, remains unchanged.
The life insurance sector reported approximately 12 per cent YoY RWRP growth in Mar’22, leading to approximately 16 per cent YoY growth for FY22. Growth for LIC and the private sector both stood at approximately 12 per cent YoY in Mar’22, but for FY22 the private sector grew at approximately 22 per cent YoY vs. LIC’s growth at a meager approximately 7 per cent YoY.
Adjusting for Covid-19-related base impact in FY21, the two-year RWRP CAGR for the private sector was impressive at 14.5 per cent YoY vs. Anemic 1.6 per cent CAGR for LIC. This disparity in growth resulted in LIC losing 5.7 per cent of the RWRP market share in two years, falling to 37.1 per cent in FY22.
Beyond near-term turbulence, the sector’s RWRP growth should broadly track nominal GDP growth, with private leaders growing faster than that and LIC growing slower. In addition, the strength of private life insurers’ balance sheets and their business models has been well affirmed during the deadly second wave of Covid-19.