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FCA expects insurance add-on providers to 'improve value they offer consumers'

Christopher Woolard, executive director of strategy and competition at the FCA

The FCA has begun its publication of data about claims frequencies, claims acceptance rates and average claims pay-outs in a bid to make the value of products more transparent for consumers.

Results from 38 insurance providers have been published as part of a general insurance value measures pilot, with data covering the year ending 31 August 2016.

Christopher Woolard (pictured), executive director of Strategy and Competition at the FCA, said: “We expect the pilot publication to help incentivise firms to improve the value they offer consumers.”

The publication of potential “value indicators” follows the findings of the FCA’s general insurance add-ons market study in which it found poor value in both add-on and some stand-alone products sold by firms.

They also found that consumers find it difficult to assess value due to the lack of a commonly available measure.

To help address these issues the FCA set out in their subsequent feedback statement (FS16/1) that they would pilot the publication of value measures data.

These data include claims frequencies, claims acceptance rates and average claims pay-out by insurers in four market areas: home insurance; home emergency insurance; personal accident insurance sold as an add-on to motor or home insurance; key cover sold as an add-on to motor.

A statement issued by the FCA said that, by publishing the pilot data, consumer groups and market commentators would have “commonly available indicators of value for insurers by which to help assess products”, adding: “Firms may also use the data to compare to their peers.”

Woolard said: “We want stakeholders to have access to a wide range of information about the value of general insurance products that goes beyond price.

“The pilot will allow us to refine the value measures and obtain further evidence of the effectiveness of these measures ahead of any potential consultation.”

The FCA plans to publish further pilot data for the year ending August 31st, 2017, and will consider a further publication of data for the year ending August 31st, 2018.

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