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Mitchell’s Latest Trends Report Examines Deductibles’ Impact on Severity

Link between flat collision repair severity and the rise in deductibles over the past six years analyzed.

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Mitchell has announced the availability of its Industry Trends Report (ITR), which examines data from Q3, 2012. Now featuring state-by-state data from Enterprise Rent-A-Car that reports on the repairable length of rentals, the ITR offers comprehensive, industry-specific data driving trends in property and casualty (P&C).

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The Auto Physical Damage edition of the ITR features the article “Are Rising Deductibles Driving Severity Trends?” by Mitchell’s vice president of industry relations, Greg Horn. Analyzing data on collisions, repairs and claims, the article examines the link between flat collision repair severity and the rise in deductibles over the past six years. The article states that consumers are opting for raised deductibles in an effort to cut expenses, but are then reticent to seek repairs for which they will shoulder more of the financial cost. Horn says this data is in alignment with state data from Enterprise, which found the average rental time remained consistent across the U.S. in the third quarter of 2012. Mitchell expects an increase leading into the fourth quarter of the calendar year as weather and holidays come into play.

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“While higher deductibles are good for the insurance industry since consumers carry more of the repair bill, this is not as positive for the repair shops or rental car companies, which are seeing less business," said Horn. "It’s important to examine whether there is a causal relationship here, or if other factors are influencing the severity trends. Our latest ITR explains our findings on which factors do and do not have the greatest influence on the rise in repairable severity.”

The Auto Casualty Edition article, “Coping with Compliance in the Property & Casualty Industry,” by Michele Hibbert-Iacobacci, Mitchell’s vice president of information management and client services, discusses the increasing challenges P&C insurance carriers face due to new or changing legislation. Federal regulations and Accountable Care Organizations require skilled navigation and following arduous processes for compliance and success, while maintaining a focus on quality and service. Carriers must stay informed and continuously analyze the impact of such initiatives on their policyholders and businesses.

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“Most legislation is put in place to benefit the consumer, but it’s difficult to predict the impact on any party once it becomes law,” said Hibbert-Iacobacci. “Changes to processes are often relevant in the areas of billing, payment models and privacy. Even when the intent is well meaning, many causal relationships arise when laws change. The latest Mitchell ITR guides P&C carriers in their quest to learn from the past and gain better insight into what changes may come.”

The complete report is available at www.mitchell.com/industry-trends-report.

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