CEE 3Q2011: Currency depreciation pushed the regional growth rate "in red" 25 January 2012

25 January 2012 — Daniela GHETU
CEE 3Q2011: Currency depreciation pushed the regional growth rate
xcom_statisticWe are finally looking to the "big CEE picture" for 3Q2011. Denominated in European currency, the total figures show a decrease of 0.7% in written premiums, to EUR 24.72 billion. Beside the obvious market shrinking registered in Croatia, Hungary and Romania, most of the negative regional trend came from the significant depreciation of the national currencies in countries as Poland and Hungary, which affected the results' conversion in Euro. A rough estimate shows that the weighted nominal growth of the CEE insurance market - calculated in local currencies - stood at about 4.28%.

graph-ceeNo doubt, the Polish market set the trend again, its 40% market share being determinant. In fact, disregarding the Polish result, the rest of the CEE market registered a total dynamic of about 0.3%, while the youngest markets in the region reported growth rates between 3 - 10%. The most interesting exceptions to the general trend are Latvia and Lithuania, with almost 28% and 11% respectively, nominal growth.

On the life insurance side, the best dynamics were registered in the young markets as Albania, Macedonia, Serbia or Montenegro. Still, once again, the Polish life insurance market's weight in the region, of almost 60%, was decisive, and its negative evolution in Euro, of -4.5%, determined an overall decrease of about 1.6% at the CEE level.

On the non-life business side, the CEE market witnessed mixed results on the motor and household insurance classes. Seven countries registered positive growth rate in national currency on both classes: Bosnia, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Montenegro, Poland, Serbia. Still, in some cases, the significant depreciation of the local currency exchange rate against euro pushed the growth rates' value in red, when calculated in Euro. Another eight countries - Albania, Croatia, Estonia, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Turkey -, reported stagnant or negative trends on the motor lines and a positive dynamic on the property classes, mostly on the "fire & other perils" one. Bulgaria and Czech Republic are the only two countries where the results in motor insurance outpaced the property classes' performance.

The PZU companies - PZU and PZU Zycie - remain the absolute CEE market leaders. The following two position of the life insurance regional ranking belong also to the Polish companies, EUROPA and WARTA, while in the non-life ranking the Polish leader is followed by two Czech insurers, CESKA Pojistovna and KOOPERATIVA VIG.

Access www.xprimm.com and download the 3Q2011 CEE insurance market statistics.

CEE Market data (GWP/Claims/Market shares/Growth rates - in EUR and local currencies)
Regional rankings