January 17, 2023
Canadian life insurance application activity finished 2022 down -7.2% Year-to-Date (YTD) compared with full year 2021 activity, with December activity down -4.9% Year-over-Year (YOY). 2022 saw YOY growth in August and flat activity in September, with declines in all other months, in the double digits for April through June. However, the declines in Q2 2022 can be attributed, in part, to corresponding significant growth in Q2 2021.
Activity for ages 61-70 ended 2022 flat compared to 2020 YTD, while all other age bands showed declines, in the double digits for ages 31-50. Activity for ages 0-30 was down -4.1% YTD, ages 31-50 down -10.7%, ages 51-60 down -5.2%, ages 61-70 flat at -0.4%, and for ages 71+ down -5.6%. On a YOY basis, we saw fluctuating patterns across age bands throughout the year. The most consistent patterns were for ages 31-50, which had the lowest performance across age bands for all months except December, and ages 61-70 which had the highest performance for 8 out of 12 months.
Based on information reported to MIB, in 2022 total application activity for policies up to and including $500K made up more than 67% of total activity. YTD double digit declines in activity for these lower face amounts, offset by double digit YTD growth for face amounts over $1M, drove the composite decline in 2022. When examining age bands, activity for ages 0-30 ended 2022 at double-digit growth YTD for face amounts over $500K and declined for all other face amounts. Ages 31-50 saw double-digit YTD growth for amounts over $1M, and declining activity for all other face amounts, in the double digits for amounts up to and including $500K. Ages 51-60 saw YTD growth for amounts over $500K, in the double digits for amounts over $500K up to and including $1M and amounts over $2.5M, and declining activity for all other face amounts, in the double digits for amounts up to and including $250K. Ages 61-70 saw YTD growth for amounts over $250K, in the double digits for amounts over $250K up to and including 1M, and double-digit declines for amounts up to and including $250K. Ages 71+ saw double-digit YTD growth for amounts over $1M up to and including $2.5M and amounts over $5M, flat activity for amounts over $2.5M up to and including $5M, declines for all other face amounts, in the double digits for amounts over $250K up to and including $1M.
In 2022, Universal Life represented 12.1% of total Canadian life insurance activity, while Whole Life represented 25.9% and Term Life represented 32.2%. The remaining 29.9% reflects activity where a product type was not provided to MIB. Although it makes up a small proportion of overall activity, Universal Life saw a significant YTD growth at +26.0% in 2022. Whole Life saw a slight decrease at -1.9%, while Term Life decreased by -9.2% YTD. When examining age bands, Term Life saw double-digit growth for ages 71+, flat activity for ages 61-70, and declines for ages 0-60, in the double digits for ages 31-50. Universal Life saw double-digit growth for ages 0-70 and double-digit declines for ages 71+. Whole Life saw growth at ages 0-30 and declines for ages 31+.
In December 2022, the total Life Index volume for Canada that did not include a product type jumped to 35%, representing a higher total volume than any single identified product type. We believe the vast majority of these submissions are for Life Insurance applications and have included them in the composite analysis presented in this report. However, missing product type information can have a significant impact on the Canadian analysis, especially at this large volume. When looking solely at submissions identified as for Life Insurance products, December 2022 activity for Canada YOY was down -11.7%, and 2022 finished YTD at -1.8% when compared to 2021.
NOTE: Due to frequent missing information regarding the applicant’s country of residence, effective January 2022 we are now identifying Canadian activity based on the company country.