New research from LIMRA shows that Canadian life insurance new annualized premium increased two per cent year-over-year in the first quarter of 2024, reaching $445-million during that period. The Canadian Individual Life Insurance Sales Survey also found that the number of policies sold was level with the results reported in the first quarter of 2023.

“Whole life and term product sales – which typically serve middle-income and younger consumers respectively – recorded growth this quarter,” says LIMRA’s associate research director, Nancy Moussa. Noting an opportunity for advisors selling the product, she adds that LIMRA’s research shows 30 per cent of Canadian adults say they need life insurance or need more of it. She adds that younger adults tended to express the greatest need, but Canadians in general often don’t follow through on buying due to lack of knowledge and uncertainty.

Policy count was flat 

Whole life sales powered the overall increase in the first quarter, jumping four per cent, following record sales in 2023. They say policy count was flat for the quarter. “Whole life premium represented 68 per cent of the life insurance market in Canada. Participating whole life sales increased five per cent and represented 89 per cent of total whole life sales in the first quarter,” they state.

Term life new annualized premium, meanwhile, increased one per cent year-over-year to $85.7-million. Term products made up 19 per cent of total new annualized premium in Canada. At the same time, universal life new annualized premium fell seven per cent to $58.9-million. Policy count fell one per cent when compared to first quarter 2023 results. Universal life premium made up 13 per cent of the total.

“Started in 1993, LIMRA’s Canadian Individual Life Insurance Sales Survey represents 93 per cent of the Canadian market,” they conclude.