As successful businesses mature, they often outgrow their domestic markets and set their sights further afield. Breaking into and finding success in a new market can often be very profitable, but it can also be fraught with challenges – not least the lack of knowledge around what risks are faced and the best ways to transfer them.
It is coming to that time of year when people start making predictions and forecasts. What will we see in 2014? What trends are developing? Is there a new moon in Aquarius that will affect Sagittarians?
As governments across Europe and globally continue to grapple with inflated deficits, the pressure on state Treasuries and tax authorities to raise additional revenues is being felt in the insurance market. Often overlooked by the tax man, global programmes are now seen as fair game for tax inspectors looking for fiscal receipt opportunities. This article reviews what has been happening in the global programme tax arena in the past year, and how taxes could be on the rise for insurers and their insureds.
What’s the hardest part of putting together a global insurance programme? (This, of course, rather implies that there may be some parts of putting together a global programme that aren’t hard, or time-consuming). Is it getting all the risk and exposure information from the subsidiaries? Or is it identifying the programme requirements? Choosing a global insurer or putting in place a panel of insurers?
Insurers and reinsurers continue to show interest in entering the Latin American market due to the realised and potential growth in the region. This interest has led to a more competitive industry with (re)insurers establishing operations locally to be closer to the local players.
It was almost inevitable that the banking crisis would impact on the insurance sector. Not so much the financial fall-out but the regulatory response. The obsession with systemic risk (quite right in the case of the banks, as history has shown) has spilled over into the insurance sector, resulting in the IAIS publishing a list of Global Systemically Important Insurers.A list of GSI reinsurers will be published by the IAIS next year.
Until fairly recently, admitted global programmes had been confined to property and liability classes, but as countries are becoming more sophisticated with their insurance laws, and becoming more litigious, times are changing.
It’s been quite a summer. And not just because of the good weather (I’m British), the Tour de France win (yes, I’m British), Wimbledon (did I mention, I’m British), or the cricket (I’m actually English). For global insurers, there has been a lot of regulatory activity, to the point where one wonders if some insurance executives managed a summer holiday at all, or were holed up in the office dealing with all the various consultations, frameworks, regulatory changes and so on.
D&O is hardly new. It’s been around for over two decades. But the events of the last few years have shown that it is certainly still evolving. It’s now clear that one of the side-effects of the global financial crisis has been an increase in the potential exposures company directors find themselves up against. In the immediate wake of the fallout, investors in financial companies were left nursing substantial losses, resulting in a spate of lawsuits from disgruntled shareholders, not just in the United States but in Europe too.
There was a time when one of the major benefits of a captive insurance company was tax treatment. Hence the popularity of offshore captive domiciles with their zero rated tax schemes. But the latter part of the 20th Century saw a concerted effort by the authorities to remove these tax benefits and clamp down hard on domiciles. As a result, tax moved down the list of reasons for having a captive.