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Archived stories from 2009

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London market brokers long for return of hard market

Posters with the message ?Do you want a prolonged hard market?? are causing a stir in the London Underwriting Centre. ?I think it is disgusting filth,? said one stereotypical insurance manager. ?It shouldn?t be allowed. Not when there?s women, young children and actuaries around.?

Hello Boys

The billboards, which have been placed around the market with the intention of stimulating a firming of conditions, have proved controversial.

But for many city workers, the billboards have struck a chord. ?It has been years since I had a hard market,? said underwriter Edward ?Woody? Woodward of Double Entend Re, ?I can barely remember what it feels like to have a really long, hard market that won?t go down,? he said. A middle-aged Lloyd?s underwriter, Sidney Jaymes of Carion Underwriting Agency, concurred. ?First thing this morning I had a firm resolve but by the time I got to work in the market it had died off.?

Some market watchers believe that role playing between brokers and underwriters could help harden the market. Analyst Dr Donna Summers suggests brokers and underwriters could try adopting submissive and dominating roles, dictating very strict terms and conditions in an effort to help stiffen underwriters? approach.

?Make placements fun. Underwriters should tell brokers where to stick their line-slip; brokers should try taking different positions, bending over backwards, for example,? Dr Summers said. ?We?re touching the bottom of the market and the only way is, er, up,? she added gratuitously.

But many middle aged underwriters still say they are having difficulty getting rates up. ?I?m near to retirement and although I can get rates up it never lasts very long,? said one underwriter who asked to remain anonymous but is actually called Frank Howerd. ?I find looking at magazines helps sometimes.?

A recent issue of Global Rebore International had cover stories with titles such as Lloyd?s Two To A Box Scandal, Bermuda Love Triangle, Nat Cat O?Ninetails Punishes Underwriter, Water Sports Risks Uncovered. (Is this strictly necessary? Ed)

Other news from Feb 2009
Travelating the Wave of Insurability
the serious stuff
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