Massachusetts-based MIB Group, which publishes the monthly 2023 MIB Life Index Mid-Year Report, says life insurance application activity in the United States has returned to growth, with 2023 year-to-date results up 4.3 per cent at the end of June. 

The report, which was presented via webinar by Patty DeWitt, vice president of Member Services at MIB, also says that 2023 has the second-highest mid-year growth rates over the last 10 years, behind only 2021. 

DeWitt says results show a reversal of declining year-over-year activity seen in 2022, following record-breaking growth in 2021 and 2020. 

A 10-year analysis of application submissions from January to June of each year reveals a fluctuating pattern – ranging from a decline of 8.8 per cent in 2018 to growth of 7.3 per cent in 2021. 

DeWitt says the report looks at historical application activity by face amount and product type trends.

During the first half of 2023, she says, “we have seen upward trends for face amounts over $250,000” (all figures in U.S. dollars). 

Related: United States application activity flat in July 

Related: MIB Group publishes second quarter Canadian application activity 

In other products, term life led in growth from Q1 of 2019 to Q2 of 2020; however, in Q3 of 2020, universal life began to edge forward in growth. But in Q2 of 2021, whole life took the lead, says DeWitt.

At the end of the first half of 2023, all products returned to growth, with universal life surging ahead.

In age bands, DeWitt says that prior to Q2 of 2020, ages 71 and older outpaced other age categories in quarterly year-over-year growth. When the pandemic hit, trends shifted: ages 71 and older declined and ages 31 and 50 recognized the most significant growth.

However, starting in Q1 of 2023, age groups between zero and 50 took the lead and ages 71 and older returned to a downward trend.