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Insurance industry: volume of premiums stagnated for the first time, following many years of growth

At the end of 2016, roughly 1,300 direct insurance and reinsurance companies and pension funds were operating in Germany. While direct insurers cover various risks of private individuals and businesses, reinsurers cover the risks of other insurance companies. Pension funds are a type of employee pension scheme.

The insurance industry as a whole achieved gross premiums to the amount of roughly 269 billion euros in 2016. Direct insurers accounted for almost 200 billion euros (74.3%). The total of premiums was up by just under 0.2% year-on-year, which means that an almost stagnant volume of premiums was recorded for the first time, following many years of growth (2015: +4.0%). The largest increase in gross premiums was observed for pension funds (Pensionskassen; +4.2%), whereas pension funds (Pensionsfonds) recorded a loss of 6.9%. The volume of life assurance premiums continued to decrease (-1.7%), though at a slower pace than in the previous year (-2.6%).

At the end of 2016, roughly 160,000 people were employed in the insurance industry, that is an increase of about 4,000 (+2.7%) year-on-year. After staff had been reduced in life assurance and health insurance in 2015 (-0.9% and -1.5%, respectively), large staff increases were recorded in 2016 in both areas (+4.4% and +14.7%, respectively). The opposite applies to indemnity and accident insurance and reinsurance. In 2015, people had been hired in these insurance branches (+1.4% and +3.3%, respectively), while in 2016 staff was reduced (-2.5% and -1.2%, respectively).

Additional Information

Key figures

Key figures, 2016
Eco­nomic sectorsPersons em­ployed
(mn)
Turnover
(bn)
Transpor­tation and storage2.3315.1
Infor­mation and commu­nica­tion1.2265.6
Profes­sional, scientific and technical activi­ties2.7313.7
Ad­minis­trative and support service activi­ties3.5210.4

© Statistisches Bundesamt (Destatis), 2018

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