Regions Leads Insurance Market, Stephens Makes Gains

by Gwen Moritz and Mark Friedman  on Monday, Oct. 12, 2009 12:00 am  

Although it wasn't a separate company at the time, Risk Services reported its 2008 book of business as $26.85 million - all of it property and casualty. First Arkansas Insurance is one of the state's largest agencies, but after taking out Risk Services' business, it fell to No. 6 from No. 4 on last year's list.

That allowed Brown-Hiller-Clark & Associates of Fort Smith and Brown & Brown of Arkansas Inc. to move into the fourth and fifth positions. Each reported solid sales gains last year.

The largest 15 agencies that responded to our survey this year reported a total of almost $1.87 billion in premium written in 2008. That compares with $1.835 billion by last year's top 15, but the 1.7 percent increase is not exact because different agencies chose to participate.


P&C List

This year's list of the largest property and casualty insurance companies ranked by total premium written in Arkansas in 2008 looks similar to last year's list.

State Farm Insurance of Bloomington, Ill., continues to be the dominant player in the state. It increased its Arkansas premium by 3.1 percent to $513.5 million in 2008. State Farm also expanded its market share from 7.41 percent in 2007 to 7.52 percent in 2008.

In 2008, the overall premium collected by property and casualty insurance companies in Arkansas was $6.8 billion, a rise of 1.54 percent over 2007.

New on this year's list is Assurant Inc. of New York, which is No. 31 with $22 million in Arkansas premium.

Also new to the list is Auto-Owners Insurance Group of Lansing, Mich. It had $18.6 million in premium in 2008, good enough for No. 34 on Arkansas Business' ranking.

Off the list is American Modern Insurance Group of Amelia, Ohio. Also removed from the list is Safeco Insurance Co. of America, which is based in Seattle.

Liberty Mutual Group of Boston bought Safeco in 2008 in a transaction valued at nearly $6.2 billion. The acquisition helped Liberty Mutual jump from No. 12 on the list in 2007 with $89.5 million in premium to No. 9 this year with $129.2 million in premium.



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