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California Homeowners Insurance – Availability and Affordability as Wildfires Burn
As of November 2020, there were 9,279 wildfires in California. These incidents were responsible for 4.2 million acres burned, 31 fatalities and over 10,000 structures damaged or destroyed. According to Cal Fire, significant fire potential remained above normal across Southern California through December. Even before the devastating year, the California Department of Insurance (CDI) was researching the availability and affordability of wildfire coverage. One step in increasing availability was ordering the California FAIR Plan to provide a comprehensive policy in addition to its fire-only coverage by June 1, 2020. 
Comparing COVID-19 to Other Disasters
Trenton Lipka November 12, 2020 Posted in: Blog Posts, Insurance / Insurers, News
COVID-19 has been of those rare events that has gotten the entire nation and the entire world to stop and pay attention to it. There have been a few of these events that have occurred in my lifetime, including the September 11 terrorist attacks, the hurricane season of 2004, Hurricane Katrina and the stock market crash of 2008. For me, however, the COVID-19 pandemic is the first crisis I have experienced as a part of the workforce. I sat down with Principal and Consulting Actuary Rob Walling to better understand the impact those earlier, notable and older disasters had on insurance, as well as the potential parallels with COVID-19. Rob has experience working with a wide variety of insurance coverages through all of these periods of time and provides a keen perspective to the effects any of these catastrophes have on the insurance industry.
Pandemic and Apocalyptic Skies – 2020 in the Bay Area
Laura Maxwell October 13, 2020 Posted in: Blog Posts, Insurance / Insurers, News
Wildfire season started early and ferociously. According to CAL Fire’s website, as of October 4, over 4 million acres have burned. That is more than 20 times higher than the acres burned in 2019 for the same time period. Five of the top twenty largest wildfires in California have occurred in 2020 and wildfire season is not yet over. Although I’m very lucky to be safe from the fires, there are reminders of the devastation with the dark skies and the falling ash. Checking both the air quality index and pandemic metrics has become my daily habit.
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Connecting the Dots of Insurance Fraud Using Graph Analytics
In The State of Insurance Fraud Technology (2019), the most recent report published by the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud (CAIF) and the SAS Institute, nearly 75% of survey participants experienced a rise in fraudulent claims in the past three years. This represents a disturbing 11% increase since 2014. The survey was based on 84 primarily property and casualty insurers. None of the participating insurers indicated that fraud had decreased significantly during the same time frame. As a consequence of the rise in fraudulent claims, insurers are moving away from traditional formulaic business rules and red flags for identifying fraud. Instead, insurers are enriching their data analytics arsenals to include more sophisticated tools, methods and means to investigate fraud.  
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Captives and Agribusiness
Aaron Hillebrandt December 02, 2019 Posted in: Blog Posts, Captives, Insurance / Insurers
Two industries not typically associated with innovation are insurance and agriculture. Today, it’s an inaccurate perception. Agriculture is perhaps the world’s original story of innovation. For millennia, agriculture’s history has been one of resourcefulness, and finding ways to grow food through every form of peril, from pests to drought. The modern agricultural industry, agribusiness, has continued that story of innovation with new products and novel approaches that save water, reduce crop disease and increase crop yields. Farmers are even relying on technological advancements like drones, robots and gene editing in their operations.
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