AM Best: Title Insurers' Fate Tied to U.S. Housing Market (AM BestTV)

·3-min read

In this episode of AMBestTV, Fred Eslami, associate director, and Ann Modica, associate director, economic and industry research, AM Best, said title insurers and the housing market have been resilient during the pandemic. Click on http://www.ambest.com/v.asp?v=ambtitleeslamimodica1020 to view the entire program.

U.S. title insurance industry results correlate highly with the U.S. housing market. Eslami addressed how the COVID-19 pandemic put the brakes on the housing market, though it has since rebounded.

"In April, housing starts fell 30% from March and 20% from the year before. The general consensus for AM Best rated title companies was that the market was fluid, and the companies were monitoring their projections for 2020 very closely," said Eslami. "By the end of the second quarter, there had been signs of improvement, given the government bailout and the declining unemployment, With increases in housing starts and sales of existing home inventory, combined with further increases in re-financings, title insurance companies did not see the need to make major adjustments to their original projections."

Modica said the ongoing pandemic makes the path to economic recovery uncertain.

"This is the first recession since the global financial crisis, and it does remain to be seen what type of recovery takes place, which has a lot to do with something we have absolutely no control over: the virus itself. All of these factors can affect the economy in negative ways, as well as the housing and title markets."

To access the related market segment report, titled, "Title Insurance Market Perseveres Amid Upheaval and Economic Uncertainty," please visit http://www3.ambest.com/bestweek/purchase.asp?record_code=301794.

Recent AMBestTV coverage includes:

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  • Nurses Could Face Additional Liability Claims From COVID-19 Care: The scope of legal immunity offered by some states has not been tested yet, said Jennifer Flynn, Nurses Service Organization risk manager, Aon's Affinity Insurance Services: http://www.ambest.com/v.asp?v=nurseliability1020.

  • Consumers Shopping More for Insurance During Tough Economic Times: From claims handling to vehicle mileage, no single event has impacted insurers as much as the COVID-19 pandemic, said panelists on an AMBestTV webinar: http://www.ambest.com/v.asp?v=covidrecut920.

AM BestTV covers exclusive AM Best and insurance industry information and reports, targeted topics and key developments in the insurance, reinsurance and related sectors daily. Sign up for alerts of episodes at www.ambest.com/multimedia/ambtvsignup.html. View AM BestTV episodes at www.ambest.tv.

AM Best is a global credit rating agency, news publisher and data analytics provider specializing in the insurance industry. Headquartered in the United States, the company does business in over 100 countries with regional offices in New York, London, Amsterdam, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore and Mexico City. For more information, visit www.ambest.com.

Copyright © 2020 by A.M. Best Company, Inc. and/or its affiliates. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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Contacts

Lee McDonald
Group Vice President, Publication and News Services
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5561
lee.mcdonald@ambest.com