JP Conoscente

In an interview with The Insurer TV, Conoscente said the fundamentals the market saw in 2021 – including low interest rates, elevated catastrophe activity, climate change, social inflation, uncertainty about the economic environment and general risk aversion – are all set to carry on in 2022.

“We believe all the market dynamics remain in place for further hardening in 2022,” Conoscente said.

He added that the 2021 cat events in Europe and the already active hurricane season will put pressure on the upcoming renewals. 

In addition, Conoscente noted that most programs that renewed in January 2021 did so without consideration of potential Covid-19 claims, which he said “leaves additional room for price increases” as more information becomes available.

“It’s probably the best market we’ve seen in a couple of decades”

“Especially since programs such as cat XoL were never designed – or priced – to cover such claims as Covid-19 claims,” Conoscente added.

“Based on these factors, we believe the entire market remains well oriented for 2022 – it’s probably the best market we’ve seen in a couple of decades.”

Conoscente said that while Scor sees “profitable growth opportunities across most segments”, the carrier views “the most attractive opportunities” in specialty insurance.

He pointed to property, energy and niche segments such as political risk as lines of business which the carrier has earmarked for growth.

“We believe our specialty insurance portfolio will probably grow more than our reinsurance portfolio, as it did in 2021,” he said.

Looking at reinsurance, Conoscente said the most attractive opportunities were in Europe following 2021 flood losses, and global lines such as marine, energy, cyber and credit and surety, where he said the effects of market remediation should be visible in 2022.

Discussing the outlook of the P&C market, Conoscente said there remains “a lot of momentum still” for rate increases. He explained that in 2021, Scor has achieved price increases of 8 percent on average throughout the year across the entire portfolio, with June/July price witnessing increases of 7.9 percent.

“This showed that price improvements have come from all geographies and all segments this year, and we believe that given the market dynamics, the trend will continue to 2022 and see a global hardening across all geographies in all segments.”