FSCO’s latest quarterly rate approval numbers have been released and suggest that consumers will see very few savings the statutory accident benefit cuts that became effective on June 1.
FSCO approved 14 private passenger automobile insurance rate filings during the second quarter of 2016. These 14 insurers represent 30.06% of the market based on premium volume. Approved rates increased on average by 0.33% when applied across the total market. This follows the modest 3.07% reduction in approved rate filings in the first quarter of 2016.
The end of lower rate filing approvals indicate that the any savings derived from the recent reform package are small. A portion of the savings could be wiped out before the end of the calendar year if companies continue to file for increases. The government has abandoned the the 15% rate reduction promise made in August 2016. However, if you aggregate all the rate changes since the 2013 announcement, the total rate reduction is 9.84% when applied across the total market.
Product reforms have proven to be an ineffective tool for controling auto insurance premiums in Ontario. As long as transactional costs within the system remain high, Ontario drivers will continue to pay high rates. A new delivery system is needed to bring Ontario’s costs in line with other jurisdictions. For a discussion on how to address the systemic problems in Ontario, see my article entitled Ontario’s 25-Year No-Fault Journey.