The second quarter of 2018 brought the third-highest Q2 total for catastrophe bond issuance, which was at $4.03 billion, although that figure falls short of the $6.38 billion recorded in Q2 of 2017, Aon says. Alternative capital rose to $95 billion at the start of last quarter, increasing 7% over Q1 and accounting for 16% of reinsurer capacity, according to Aon.
A firefighter from Utah has died after suffering injuries while battling the Mendocino Complex fire, becoming the sixth firefighter killed amid Northern California wildfires in recent weeks. More than 30 wildfires in the Northern Rocky Mountains, meanwhile, have begun in recent days after a relatively calm start to fire season, and several large wildfires have broken out after a heat wave in Montana.
An incident in which a turboprop was stolen and crashed by a ground service agent at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is prompting questions about the security of parked airplanes and airline employees' ability to access them. The FBI and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the incident, in which the employee who stole the plane died.
While understanding five key points about credit-based insurance scoring is crucial for agents, brokers and consumers, critics argue that the practice is unfair to certain socioeconomic groups, PCI's Alex Hageli writes. "Credit-based insurance scores have proven to be an incredibly accurate predictor of future losses," and they can lead to lower premiums for many consumers, Hageli writes.
Storms on Monday caused flash flooding in areas of eastern and central Pennsylvania, where water went into homes and several roads were closed. Some stranded drivers had to be rescued from their vehicles, while crews in helicopters rescued people from roofs.
About $196 million was left in the US Forestry Service's fire-suppression account as of Aug. 6, and the agency is looking to pull $555 million from other accounts to use as additional firefighting funding. The fiscal 2018 omnibus appropriations bill will allow spending as much as $2.25 billion to battle wildfires under a provision that takes effect in fiscal 2020, and that amount is set to increase to $2.95 billion in fiscal 2027.
NAIFA CEO Kevin Mayeux has called an IRS proposal for the "qualified business income" deduction a "big win for NAIFA." "This goes hand in glove with our work with the administration and Congress to ensure tax reform made no changes to the taxation of life insurance and annuity products, protecting advisors and their clients from proposals that could have threatened Americans' financial security," Mayeux says.
Trustwave has released Social Mapper, an open-source tool that penetration testers can use to help boost training and countermeasures against phishing attacks. However, concerns have been raised about the tool's automated scraping of social media, which could violate policies on sites such as Facebook.
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority's suitability rule implies advisors must recommend financial products that are in their customers' best interests, while the Securities and Exchange Commission's proposed Regulation Best Interest explicitly establishes best interest as a "standard of care," said FINRA President and CEO Robert Cook. Cook also said that if the SEC rule is adopted, violators "could be subject to an enforcement action by FINRA and the SEC."
Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton said during a July roundtable discussion that the agency would consider producing a video series to help walk investors through the choice between a financial advisor and a broker. Clayton said the videos would contain information similar to that on Form CRS.