Today, insurers are grappling with external challenges posed by a relatively volatile economic environment and the increased frequency of catastrophic events. These challenges have, in turn, increased the internal pressures within some organizations to better manage costs and possibly increase operational efficiency.
Globalization has increased the exposure of insurers to some risks because of adverse natural events across geographies and industries. On a worldwide level, the insured catastrophe losses totaled USD65 billion in 2012, well above the USD29 billion inflation-adjusted average of the last 30 years, revealing unexpected losses and unforeseen risk accumulation across global supply chains.
A survey of insurance equity analysts commissioned by Accenture in 2012 indicated that, while the challenges facing many insurers worldwide are similar, their relative importance varies. Analysts believe that investment volatility (71 percent) and new regulations and reform (52 percent) are the biggest threats to North American companies. For European companies, regulations come first (61 percent) and investment volatility second (57 percent).