Insurance Review: Spring 2012

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PwC's Insurance Review offers a Canadian perspective on the challenges and opportunities in the insurance industry. The articles in the Spring 2012 issue are:


Insurance M&A activity increases in 2011, but will the momentum continue?

Consistent with our expectations, mergers and acquisition (M&A) activity in Canada’s insurance industry continued to increase in 2011 as more carriers and brokers sought to expand market share, drive premium growth, and seek economies of scale. A continued low interest rate environment and sluggish improvements in soft premium rates continued to squeeze margins and drive many players to seek scale. If more deals could be found, chances are more deals could have taken place.

Insurance M&A activity increases in 2011, but will the momentum continue?

A seven-year (retroactive) plague on cross-border reinsurance

How can it be that Canadian insurers discover in spring of 2012 that they might now owe GST/HST plus penalty interest on a portion of (or, according to the Canada Revenue Agency, possibly all) reinsurance premiums paid to non-resident affiliates back to November 2005? This article looks at the events that were the genesis of the new imported supply rules, the appalling five-year delay between their effective date and passage into law, and the subsequently emerging CRA view that many cross-border reinsurance transactions in a seven-year window are now caught. The objective is to assist Canadian insurers in a brief self-examination for this new and (given the enormous amounts of tax involved) devastating plague. Sadly, infection is widespread, and has now begun to manifest itself in the outbreak of multi-million dollar GST assessments on the hapless victims.

A seven-year (retroactive) plague on cross-border reinsurance

Sustaining competitive relevance — key insurance industry findings from the 15th Annual Global CEO Survey

This is a summary of the findings in the insurance sector, based on interviews with 121 industry leaders in 42 countries. To explore the full results of the PwC 15th Annual Global CEO Survey, please visit www.pwc.com/ca/ceosurvey.

Sustaining competitive relevance – key insurance industry findings from the 15th Annual Global CEO Survey