FINANCE | 15.07.2021
MAPFRE, the largest internationally active Spanish insurance group
Premiums from outside Spain reach 13.81 billion, 67.8% of the total business
MAPFRE Economics anticipates recovery as early as this year following the 8.2% drop in total premium volume posted in 2020
MAPFRE Vida is the most solvent company among the major Spanish insurance companies, with a ratio of 483%
MAPFRE has the greatest international presence among Spanish insurance companies. This is evident from the MAPFRE Economics report The Spanish insurance market in 2020, published by Fundación MAPFRE. This report ranks the four largest internationally active Spanish insurance groups on the global premium volume posted in 2019 and 2020. This information illustrates the extent of internationalization of Spanish insurance groups.
In total, MAPFRE posted a premium volume of 20.48 billion in 2020, 67.4% of which originated from outside Spain. This was significantly ahead of VidaCaixa, which came in second with a volume of 7.19 billion euros in earned premiums from direct insurance and accepted reinsurance in 2020.
The effects of the pandemic impacted the Spanish insurance industry’s evolution. At the aggregate level, premium volume amounted to 58.89 billion euros in 2020, a year-on-year decline of 8.2%. The insurance business was impacted by the effects of lockdown and social distancing measures on employment, business, households and companies, although this impact was not uniform across the business segments. Life business premiums declined by -20.7% (-5.1% in 2019), mainly due to the fall in the Life savings insurance business of -25% (-6.7% in 2019).
However, in 2020, Non-Life business in the Spanish market only slowed to 37.05 billion euros in premiums, with a growth of 1.1% (3.5% in 2019), mainly due to the decline in the automobile insurance and commercial multirisk business. Automobile insurance, nevertheless, remained the line with the largest premium volume in the Non-Life insurance segment, although its trend of reducing its weighting continues; in 2020, it accounted for 29.9% of the premiums in this segment (30.9% in 2019). The amount of premiums issued in this line totaled 11.09 billion euros in 2020, representing a year-on-year decline of -2.0%.
Health insurance was the second-biggest line by volume within the Non-Life insurance business, representing 25.3% of the total (24.4% in 2019). In 2020, premium volume amounted to 9.39 billion euros, with growth of 5.1% (4.9% in 2019). Multirisk insurance slightly increased its weighting in the Non-Life business, representing 20.9% of the total (20.5% in 2019), putting it in third place with a premium volume of 7.75 billion euros, 3.1% more than the previous year, despite the economic downturn caused by the pandemic.
The latest data for May 2021 show that Non-Life premium growth is recovering in year-on-year terms by around 2.2% at an aggregate level compared to premiums for the first five months of 2020. Life business premiums seem to be growing by 9.9% year-on-year in the first five months of the year (compared to the drop of -20.7% in 2020, for the whole year), with Life savings insurance premiums growing by 12.4% (-25.0% in 2020) and Life Protection insurance premiums by 3.1% (-0.4% in 2020). This recovery is in line with the Spanish economy’s return to growth, supported to a large extent by the ramp-up in the rate of vaccinations, which has increased pace, making it possible to relax measures taken as a result of the new outbreaks.
MAPFRE Vida, the most solvent company
MAPFRE Economics also analyzed capital requirements, own funds, and solvency ratios in the report. In 2020, the aggregate total solvency ratio for the selected sample of insurance companies operating in the Spanish market was 241%, 2 pp (percentage points) below the value recorded in 2019 (243%). With regard to own funds, the experts considered it noteworthy that almost all eligible funds were of the highest quality (99% in Tier 1).
The aggregate solvency ratio for the sample of companies mainly operating in the Life line was 273% in 2020. This represents a year-on-year improvement of 16 pp. MAPFRE Vida still boasts the highest solvency ratio in this market segment, standing at 483% (10 pp higher than in 2019).