MIB Life Index

U.S. Life Insurance Activity Off -4.8% in January, Reports the MIB Life Index

Declines across ages 0-70

February 7, 2022

U.S. life insurance application activity declined in January 2022 compared to January 2021, with Year-over-Year (YOY) activity down -4.8% and representing the second consecutive month with YOY declines. When taking a historical lookback, comparing January 2022 activity to the same month in 2020 and 2019, activity was flat. On a Month-over-Month (MOM) basis, January saw improvements over December 2021, with activity up +2.9%.

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Activity for ages 0-70 declined while ages 71+ remained flat. Activity for ages 0-30 was down -5.9%, ages 31-50 down -3.6%, ages 51-60 down -5.7%, ages 61-70 down -7.1% and for ages 71+ flat at -0.2%.

Applications for face amounts up to and including $500K represented 74% of total reported activity in January. Activity declined YOY for these lower face amounts, driving the overall results for the month. Growth was seen for face amounts over $500K up to and including $1M, flat activity for face amounts over $1M up to and including $5M and double-digit growth for amounts over $5M.

When examining age bands, there were several fluctuations. YOY activity for ages 0-30 showed declines for amounts up to and including $250K, growth for amounts over $500K up to and including $2.5M, double-digit growth for amounts over $5M and flat activity for all other amounts. Ages 31-50 saw YOY declines for amounts up to and including $500K, growth for amounts over $500K up to and including $2.5M, declines for amounts over $2.5M up to and including $5M and double-digit growth for amounts over $5M. Ages 51-60 showed declining YOY activity for amounts up to and including $500K, growth for amounts over $500K up to and including $1M, flat activity for amounts over $1M up to and including $2.5M and double-digit growth for amounts over $2.5M. Ages 61-70 saw declining activity for amounts up to $250K, double-digit declines for amounts over $250K up to and including $500K as well as for amounts over $1M up to and including $2.5M, growth for amounts over $5M and flat activity for all other categories. Ages 71+ saw declining activity for amounts up to and including $250K, flat activity for amounts $250K up to and including $500K, double-digit growth for amounts over $500K up to and including $5M and triple digit growth for amounts over $5M. It is important to note that since only 26% of total activity volume is attributable to policies with face amounts over $500K, small changes in activity in these higher face amounts can drive high YOY percent changes, especially when broken down by age band.

January 2022 saw declining activity in all product types with Term Life down -6.8%, Universal Life down -10.7% and Whole Life down -8.6%. Activity for Term Life showed declining activity for all ages, in double digits for ages 61+. Whole Life saw declining activity for ages 0-70, in the double digits for ages 0-30, and flat activity for 71+. Universal Life saw declining activity for all age groups, in the double digits for ages 31-70.

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