Skip to comments.EU insurance ruling: Enforced equality trumps facts
Posted on 03/01/2011 4:10:56 AM PST by UncleHambone
So what are the odds insurers playing fair on the EU ruling and equalising costs for men and women drivers?
Id put the chance at somewhere between extremely slim and not going to happen.
You would presume that the eurocrats who have outlawed gender based risk pricing on insurance would have realised this, but then perhaps they just dont care.
Because it seems that in their world enforced equality trumps fact.
Its rare that I find myself having any desire whatsoever to defend the insurance industry and its pricing, but there is an entire shadowy counter culture of actuaries out there with endless spreadsheets to prove the worth of gender based pricing.
Take one of them down the pub and they could spend the entire evening producing the data on how young men are more dangerous drivers, and so need higher insurance premiums, and old men die sooner, and so get better annuity rates. (I wouldnt advise actually doing this.)
Now thats not to say that insurers arent overcooking it and taking advantage of the opportunity to charge whacking great premiums on young male drivers and pay less to women for their pensions.
Of course, they are theyre insurers, do you trust them?
But responding to this issue by pretending that, despite a colossal amount of evidence to the contrary, men and women are exactly the same goes beyond perverse and into the realms of the stupid.
The new ruling has overturned a little bit of common sense from a 2004 EU directive that allowed insurers to use gender-based prices as long as these were backed by statistics.
Now, thanks to a successful challenge from the Belgian consumers' association, insurance is no longer allowed to be based on that wild and crazy factual basis.
Rather than equalising costs, this will see the cheaper bill get more expensive and the pricier one stay the same.
Overall insurance costs will rise, possibly with some excuses about the cost of implementing new rules, blah, blah, blah.
There is no way of proving this, of course, beyond the general observation that insurers are sneaky. But when was the last time a change like this ended up with more money in the publics pocket than big businesses'?
Still, theres nothing like ruling that you cant use fact anymore to improve the reputation of an organisation like the EU.
Socialists want post fire..fire insurance.
And those same belgians will complain again. Causing yet another groups premiums to go up. Liberals just don't understand how business (any business) works.
In my experience, insurance companies are there to charge exhorbitant premiums, demand certain behaviors, examine their clientele to a painful degree, and lobby with their profits to further extend their grip over the public and public activities.
They then do everything in their power to avoid paying out, (often for years) no matter how valid the claim.
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