week commencing 05/04/20:

As we head into Easter, a few nest eggs will have been impacted by the cutting of dividends by almost all listed insurers. Undaunted, the Luther crew will be back after the holiday, with renewed energy and a desire to make our mark in the cut-throat microphone tussle that is the video meeting.  To improve our chances, we’ve been taking tips from presentation specialist Viv Groskop, but not so much from the pandas.


Slew of insurers axe dividends

Insurers including Hiscox, Aviva, Direct Line and RSA have all pulled their dividends for this financial year, in a move encouraged, and welcomed by, the PRA.  Currently only L&G has refused to follow the herd. External-link. [The Insurer]


Miller sale on ice

The sale of Miller Insurance Services by Willis Towers Watson has been put on hold because of the coronavirus emergency. A spokesperson said both Miller and WTW “remain committed to the process”. External-link. [Insurance Day]


BCGI continues search for acquisitions

BCGI is a newish market name, formed in 2019 from the mergers of Ed and Besso. The group is now looking for further acquisitions, in a process that will remain untouched by coronavirus, according to COO Andrew Wallin, who also commented that Miller would be a “natural fit” for BCGI. External-link. [Reactions]


GFIA warns against contract rewrites

The Global Federation of Insurance Associations has warned against the push for insurers to provide unexpected cover for COVID-19 losses, saying its members are committed to paying where cover exists, but should not be asked to rewrite contracts retrospectively. External-link. [Reuters]


Industry braced for D&O class action lawsuits

The insurance industry is expecting a wave of lawsuits for COVID-19 related actions in the order of tens if not hundreds of millions of dollars.  Broker McGill and Partners says that claims could range from lack of preparedness in supply chains to discriminatory behaviour towards some employees during the pandemic. External-link. [Financial Times]


Lawyers look for business interruption cover loopholes

While insurers insist that business interruption policies will not cover pandemic losses, firms are increasingly disputing this on both sides of the Atlantic.  The two most popular grounds for dispute are “denial of access” clauses, or that the virus has caused a form of physical damage, rendering premises unusable. External-link. [Financial Times]


Will reinsurance continue to see rate rises?

How will the impact of the current market shock impact reinsurers in the medium term, as the wholesale market looks tentatively towards autumn renewals? External-link. [Insurance Insider]


London underwriters focused on existing clients not new business

Amwins and THB have pulled together a Lloyd’s market update, giving class-by-class predictions for the impact of COVID-19 on the London market. External-link. [Amwins]


“Own the room” via Zoom …

Viv Groskop, presentation specialist and online trainer shares her tips on how to command attention and control the room when meeting via videoconference. External-link. [Financial Times]


Or maybe just get a room?

Pandas in a Hong Kong zoo mated on Monday after ten years of trying.  It seems the unprecedented closure of the zoo brought the privacy required. The chances of a coronavirus panda baby are high, according to the zoo’s director. External-link. [BBC News]


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