What are analysts predicting for inland marine and commercial property in 2019 and beyond?

As the year kicks off, many analysts across the industry publish their views on how the market looks. The news for both inland marine and commercial property is good. Analysts at Conning Research expect that both lines will continue to grow through 2020, largely due to exposure growth1. In the AIA’s latest Consensus Construction Forecast2, forecasters anticipate growth in each of the major building sectors to be in the 3-5 percent range this year. Spending on nonresidential buildings in 2019 should be close to the growth rate seen last year and is forecast to grow into 2020. Growth in construction activity will boost builder’s risk, contractor’s equipment and installation floaters. Rates in both lines were up in Q4. MarketScout’s quarter review shows3 Inland Marine rates as relatively flat in Q4, up 1 percent, while commercial property was up 2.5 percent. Most analysts think that cat losses will continue to support rate increases in commercial property this year. Property underwriting results should continue to improve, unless 2019 becomes another high cat year.

1 “Property-Casualty Forecast & Analysis by Line of Insurance, Fourth Quarter 2018, Forecast for 2018-2020,” Conning Research
2 “Though signs point to a slowdown, growth in construction spending should continue through 2020,” Kermit Baker, January 16, 2019
3 US Commercial Rates up in Fourth Quarter 2018, MarketScout

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