"Anti inflation pack" : the commitments of insurers in the face of the crisis

“The best possible agreement”, according to Bruno Le Maire, but a “trompe-l’oeil” gesture according to consumer associations. Torn between rising claims and the decline in the purchasing power of their customers, insurers met the Minister of the Economy on Tuesday. The challenge ? Achieving an “anti-inflation pack”, and containing the rise in their prices. Done, according to Bercy. Insurers have promised that their prices will remain at a level “below inflation” for 2022 and 2023, when inflation has reached 5.9% over one year in August 2022.

Insurers have thus undertaken to ensure that the inflation index for the cost of insurance, calculated by INSEE, remains lower than the inflation index for 2022 and 2023, which does not exclude that certain contracts for customers are increasing faster, in particular “to take into account the behavior of each individual”, specified Bruno Le Maire. In other words, each insurer remains free to set its rates, as long as it respects its promise.

Another flagship measure of the “anti-inflation pack”, the promise of a discount of a car check of 100 euros for unemployed people under 25 years old. Other “individual commitments” from companies, intended for the most vulnerable audiences, should follow “in the days and weeks to come”, for her part indicated the president of France Assureurs.

AXA has already announced the freezing of the car and home premium for those under 30 without claims, as well as 100 euros offered to customers who would also like to insure their vehicle. Before the announcements, the MAIF had also indicated that it would freeze its rates for young people, and “take charge of a large part of inflation”, without specifying the amounts.

On Tuesday, the Minister of the Interior also announced that he intended to remove the green card which certifies the insurance of a vehicle, to replace it with a dematerialized version. In collaboration with the Ministry of the Interior, this initiative presented as a small revolution, should make it possible to reduce the costs of insurers, at the same time as a “simplification” of the procedures, indicates Bruno Le Maire.

Bruno Le Maire is considering the creation of a working group, to allow the reuse of certain car parts, without losing quality and safety. Recycling, in short, which must be negotiated with car manufacturers, attached to their margins on spare parts. These are among the most expensive in Europe in France. They increased by 8.1% over one year, according to the Automobile Safety and Repairs Association, bringing together car insurance companies and mutuals.

At a press conference, Bruno Le Maire acknowledged a tense situation for the insurance world”, while welcoming the guarantees obtained. Drought, floods, storms, the year 2022 is recording record costs linked to climatic disasters, although above the annual average of 3.5 billion euros recorded since 2017.

An observation brandished by insurers, who are worried about seeing natural disasters multiply in the future. “We are living through an exceptional year”, with already €5.2 billion accounted for the period from January to August, said Florence Lustman, the president of France Assureurs, the federation of the sector, while ensuring “share” the ambition of the minister in the fight for purchasing power.

But not everyone is of the same opinion. The main consumer associations denounce “trompe-l’oeil” efforts. François Carlier, general delegate of the CLCV, notably ensures the Parisian that these companies could do more, given the savings made during the confinements and on the whole of the health crisis. Claims were then much rarer.

Summoned last Tuesday by Bercy, the bankers had for their part pledged not to increase their rates by more than 2% next year. On average, they amount to 219.90 euros, according to Panorabanques, an online comparator. Another commitment, the banks promise to switch to one euro per month, instead of three euros, their offer dedicated to fragile public, a gesture however coldly welcomed by consumer associations.

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