Canadian Application Activity Returns to Growth in April Reports the MIB Life Index
YTD activity at growth for the first time since 2017
May 12, 2021
Canadian life insurance application activity returned to growth in April with YTD activity reaching +3.3%, according to the Canadian MIB Life Index. This is the first time the Canadian index saw growth YTD (>1%) since March 2017. Year-over-Year (YOY) activity soared in April to +14.9%, however the YOY comparison is impacted by a significant drop in April 2020 activity due to COVID.
All age groups experienced YOY increases in April, with ages 0-50 and 61+ showing double digit increases. Ages 0-30 grew by +21.5%, ages 31-50 by +14.4%, ages 51-60 by +6.4%, ages 61-70 by +14.5% and ages 71+ by +19.5%. On a YTD basis, all age groups have achieved growth in April, with the exception of ages 51-60 who remains down -2.8% YTD.
April saw double digit growth YOY growth across all face amounts (>15%), with the highest gain for face amounts over $1M up to and including $2.5M at +40.6% and face amounts above $2.5M up to and including $5M at +38.3%. When looking at age bands, results were mixed. Ages 0-30 increased in double digits YOY for all face amounts, ranging from +19.1% to +43.7%, with the highest YOY growth in face amounts over $500K up to and including $2.5M. Ages 31-50 also grew in the double digits across all face amounts YOY, ranging from +11.3% to +55.6%, with the hightest growth in face amounts over $1M up to and including $5M. Ages 51-60 grew YOY for face amounts up to and including $5M, in double digits for face amounts over $500K up to and including $5M, with the largest growth for policies over $2.5M up to and including $5M. However, ages 51-60 declined YOY for face amounts over $5M. Ages 61-70 saw growth YOY for face amounts up to and including $2.5M as well as over $5M, with double digit growth for face amounts up to $250K, over $1M up to and including $2.5M and the largest double digit growth for amounts over $5M. However, ages 61-70 saw YOY double digit declines for amounts over $2.5M up to and including $5M. Ages 71+ had double digit growth YOY for amounts up to and including $500K and the highest double digit growth for face amounts over $1M up to and including $5M. Age 71+ also saw YOY double digit declines for amounts over $500K up to and including $1M.
When examining activity patterns where a product type was submitted to MIB, we see growth in April 2021 across the board with Term Life up 2.7%, Universal Life up +82.2% and Whole life up +38.2% as compared to April-2020 submissions. Younger ages 0-30 saw declines in Term Life in favor of Universal Life, which grew in the triple digits and Whole Life, which grew in double digits YOY. For ages 31-50, there was YOY growth across all products with triple digit growth for Universal Life and double-digit growth for Whole Life. Ages 51-60 saw flat activity for Term Life and double-digit growth for both Universal Life and Whole Life. Ages 61-70 saw growth across all products, in double digits for Whole Life and ages 71+ saw double digit growth across all product types, notably with the highest growth in Term Life.
About 34% of total Life Index volume for Canada in April did not include a 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. Missing product type information has a significant impact on Canadian analysis. When looking solely at submissions identified as for Life Insurance products growth is even higher, with activity up +20.7% YOY for Canada in April 2021 and up 12.0% YTD.