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August 27, 2014 Weekly Industry Newsletter

Wednesday, August 27, 2014   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Kim Cottrell
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August 27, 2014

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Napa earthquake 1: The PIA Group States response
In the early morning hours of Aug. 24, an earthquake struck in California's Napa Valley. The 6.0 event shook the area and the state with the largest and most destructive earthquake in Northern California in 25 years. Insurers — according to Kinetic Analysis Corp. — will cover about $2.1 billion of the $4 billion in estimated damages. William (Bill) Prentiss, ARM, of Prentiss Insurance Services in Anaheim, California, is the president of the PIA Group States — California, Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico. He has been a commercial insurance broker for 35 years and a risk manager for more than 25. Prentiss stated, "My approach to my clients is very much on a risk-management basis, regardless if they are personal lines or commercial/business clients."

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Napa earthquake 2: California's commissioner responds
A 6.0 earthquake hit California's Napa Valley on the early morning of Aug. 24. Damages are estimated at about $4 billion. California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones said the "widespread damage and injury is a stark reminder that we live in earthquake country and California residents need to prepare for the inevitable by having an emergency plan with adequate supplies to survive the first few days and consider how best to secure their biggest asset — their home — from devastating loss either through retrofitting or purchasing earthquake insurance."

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Napa earthquake 3: The preliminary damage estimate
The strongest earthquake to hit Northern California in 25 years hit the Napa Valley at around 3 a.m., Aug. 24. It was a 6.0 magnitude on the Richter scale. Damage, so far by a number of estimating firms, is said to be $4 billion and counting. Insurance Information Institute President and economist Dr. Robert Hartwig said insurance will cover about $2.1 billion.

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 PIAW Happenings 
Around the PIA Western Alliance States 

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PIA National's District Lobbying Day — game on
Aug. 19 was the annual PIA National District Lobbying Day. That's the day the association asked you — its independent insurance agent members — to meet with your members of Congress to discuss issues critical to your business and the industry. PIA National Senior Vice President Ted Besesparis said the hope was to have everyone meet on that date, but that's not realistic. So, if you didn't meet on Aug. 19, anytime in the month of August will work — as long as it is before the annual congressional August recess is over.

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PIA National analyzes ACA court rulings
On July 22, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit and a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit issued conflicting opinions. As you may know, the issue is whether the federal government can subsidize health insurance premiums for Americans living in one of the 36 states relying on the federal government to operate its health care exchange.

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Industry News from PIA Western Alliance 

Too many independent insurance agencies?
This story comes to us from the Insurance Business America website. We appreciate the information and the responses that you'll see at the end of this article.

And we'll want your response to this as well.

The National Financial Partners Property & Casualty Insurance Services did a study and found there are close to 38,500 independent insurance agencies in the United States. The group's CEO Terrence Scali said that is 22,000 too many.

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PIAW Pulse:
http://www.multibriefs.com/briefs/img/635line.png
Based on the above article, "Too many independent insurance agencies?", PIAW would like to
know what you think:


Do you feel there are there too many independent insurance agencies?

Do you believe there is some truth to the one readers' comment about carriers are
appointing too many agents?

A hard insurance market — not always a positive
When commercial and personal lines rates were rapidly rising some thought for sure we had entered that long-awaited, much-anticipated hard market. MarketScout's CEO Richard Kerr proclaimed a year ago that the hard market had — indeed — arrived. Others said the same thing.

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Fighting wildfires: A different paradigm needed
The Obama administration wants to fight fire with nonfire budgets and restructure the way the U.S. Forest Service is managed. Agriculture Department Secretary Tom Vilsack said the escalating cost of fighting the increasing number of wildfires is wreaking havoc with the Forest Service's budget and — worse — with the ability of his department to do projects that keep fires from happening.

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Flash flooding: A growing problem
Natural disasters are up in the United States. And by up, we mean that with a capital "U." Munich Re and the Insurance Information Institute recently released a report stating that natural disasters in the U.S. have quintupled over the past 30 years. That's an increase of five times and has a huge impact on insurance.

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Moody's peers into the future: A competitive rest of 2014
Moody's Investors Service released a report U.S. P&C Insurers' Earnings Lower in Q2 2014 on Higher Catastrophe Losses. It says to look for more competition during the remainder of this year and possibly into 2015. Moody’s says a strong capital base and increased profitability are the reason.

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Obama administration and new contraceptive rules
The Obama administration is trying to find a way to help employees whose privately held corporations or religious nonprofit organizations get contraceptives if the organization or business objects. The U.S. Supreme Court recently said they didn't.

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More bad news for Washington fire victims
The Carlton Complex wildfire is the largest fire in Washington state's history. It is a disaster of epic proportions. Now, some residents of the affected area are seeing more even disaster: Mudslides.

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TRENDING ARTICLES

Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

New data on earthquakes: 16 states at high risk (PIAW)
The West is on fire (PIAW)
How educated do you want your clients to be? (
by Curtis M. Pearsall, CPCU, AIAF, CPIA, President, Pearsall Associates Inc. Special Consultant to the Utica National Agents E&O program)
Ransomeware: The new cyberthreat (PIAW)
PIA education favorite Gary Thompson to retire
(PIAW)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.

Auto report: Most stolen, highest and lowest insurance costs
Every year the National Insurance Crime Bureau does its annual "Hot Wheels" report. This is where we find out the favorite targets of auto thieves. Here's the list of the most stolen vehicles in 2013.

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AIG revelations: 2 execs
In 2010, Kevin McGinn, who was AIG's chief credit officer, was interviewed by the Security and Exchange Commission about AIG's near collapse in 2008. McGinn wasn't the purpose of the investigation. The SEC just wanted his view on the collapse of AIG and its financial products division.

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Cover Oregon: The state pulls lawsuit trigger
Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber and the state's Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum have pulled the trigger. The state filed the long-anticipated lawsuit against Oracle for the failure of Oregon's ObamaCare health insurance website, Cover Oregon.

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FEATURED ARTICLE TRENDING ARTICLE MOST POPULAR ARTICLE 

Strategic planning: Here and now
Insurance Networking News
Sometimes strategic planning sessions can drift off into the world of ideals. It's necessary to set the "idea permission meter" pretty high so that strategic discussions can at least explore what is within the art of the possible, even if those ideas aren't exactly within the realm of practical.

It's time: PIA Washington, IIABW Annual Washington Joint Conference
PIAW
The annual WA Joint Conference of the PIA Washington/Alaska and the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of Washington changes venues this year and moves from Seattle's Emerald City to the beauty of one of Washington's premiere getaways. 
Obama Administration, consumers worry about HealthCare.gov future failure
PIAW
We’re not done with the Obamacare federal exchange technical glitches. To begin, the producers and insurers who still are awaiting payment for work done on behalf of HealthCare.gov, have not yet seen the back end of the federal exchange completed. 

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NFIP has redesigned Map Service Center
The National Flood Insurance Program has redesigned the Federal Emergency Management Agency Flood Map Service Center. You can see it here: https://msc.fema.gov/portal.

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P&C rates for 2Q
The Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers' quarterly report the Commercial Property/Casualty Market Index Survey has been released. It states that in the second quarter, property and casualty insurance rates sagged to the softer side of the scale.

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News You Can Use 

Young agents: Career flexibility tops technology
Vertafore is an insurance technology provider. The firm recently released results of a survey it conducted with a focus on young agents. The survey found — when it comes to job satisfaction — young agents value flexibility and career-growth opportunities more than technology.

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PIA Weekly Industry News

Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
Download media kit

Rebecca Eberhardt, Content Editor, 469.420.2608   
Contribute news

Gary Wolcott, Editor/Writer for PIA Western Alliance, 503.724.9028   


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