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What Future for Life Insurance in France?

Laurent Clerc * Directeur d'étude et d'analyse des risques, Autorité de contrôle prudentiel et de résolution (ACPR). Contact :
Anne-Lise Bontemps-Chanel ** Cheffe du Service d'analyse des risques en assurance, ACPR.Contact :
Mohammed Ouriemchi *** Adjoint à la Cheffe du Service d'analyse des risques en assurance, ACPR.Contact : Les vues exprimées dans cet article sont celles des auteurs et ne reflètent pas nécessairement celles de la Banque de France ou de l'ACPR. Nous remercions également Denis Marionnet, Saïda Baddou et Gaëlle Capitaine pour leur aide dans la préparation de cet article.

After a decade in which life insurance fundraising had weathered the continued decline in interest rates, their entry into negative territory in 2019 exposed some limitations of its business model. Indeed, the appearance of negative nominal interest rates increases the fall in the rate of return on life insurers' assets; past commitments in terms of technical rates limit reductions in the revaluation rate; the annual remuneration of these life insurance contracts is a factor in customer attractiveness and competition, which, all other things being equal, further reduces the potential for lower revaluation rates. In this article, we analyze the mechanisms by which the decline and the maintained environment of low interest rates have affected the balance sheet of life insurers, called into question the viability of their business model and the challenges they face to make it evolve.

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