As of the end of November 2021, total surplus line premium reported to SLTX reached $8.27 billion, exceeding the total premium filed by year-end in 2020 and 14.8 percent greater than the total premium reported at the end of November 2020.
These numbers were not yet available when Greg Brandon, executive director of the Surplus Lines Stamping Office of Texas, delivered his remarks to the members of the Texas Surplus Lines Association during its annual meeting in Austin Nov. 15. At his mid-November presentation, Brandon used year-to-date Oct. 31 data.
Along with illustrating via graphs the year-over-year growth in Texas surplus lines premium for the last five years, Brandon provided statistical evidence of the importance of TSLA in terms of the association’s members’ penetration of the Texas marketplace.
Brandon’s presentation marked his first in person address to the group since becoming SLTX’s executive director in March 2020. “It’s nice to finally be here,” he said.
While TSLA members represent only seven percent of all filers so far this year, Brandon said the premium reported by these same 62 filers represent 53 percent of all premium reported to SLTX, as of the end of October. More than $4 billion in premium has been reported by TSLA members; the remaining 859 filers together filed $3.58 billion in premium. “TSLA is a meaningful force,” said Brandon.
In terms of TSLA insurer affiliates, the proportions are similar. While there are 253 excess insurers among those covering risks in Texas on a surplus lines basis as of Oct. 31, 60, or 24 percent, of them are affiliate members of TSLA. These insurer affiliates’ share of premium reported to SLTX exceeds $4.6 billion, representing 61 percent of all premium filed.
Brandon said that the surplus lines industry continues to grow, pointing out that even with a week off in February due to the massive Texas electricity disruption, end-of-October 2021 premium was close to end of year totals for 2020. Total premium reported by the end of October was $7.59 billion; year-end total for 2020 was $7.92 billion, including $1.3 billion reported in the final two months, which were still to come for 2021 when Brandon spoke to TSLA members.
Item count is “within historical norms,” said Brandon, with 885,368 items reported by the end of October this year. By the end of October 2020, the item count total was 888,421, or about 0.3 percent less than for the same period in 2019. This slight reduction means the workload at the stamping office remains about the same, said Brandon, who said he anticipates no need for new hires to process the filings. By the end of November 2021, when there was a 6.5 percent increase in filings compared to November 2020, SLTX reported the filings count is up by 0.2 percent, 2021 year-to-date.
Liability coverage continues to dominate reported premium, said Brandon, accounting for 44 percent of all year-to-date premium. Property coverages are next, at 34 percent of the reported premium. Commercial multi-peril and auto each represent another seven percent of premium filed, with the remainder occupied by lines, such as credit, marine, med mal and accident and health, each with two percent or less of the premium filed.
The top 10 lines of coverage account for 82.17 percent of all reported premium, said Brandon. The top 10 brokers file 51.98 percent of all premium filed with SLTX, with RT Specialty and CRC Insurance Services ranked as the top two, together reporting 25.81 percent of all premium.
At $1.5 billion in premium, Underwriters at Lloyd’s London ranks as the top surplus lines insurer for premium reported to SLTX. Lloyd’s wrote 19.85 percent of all reported premium to date. In second place is National Fire and Marine Insurance Co., with 3.57 percent of the reported premium. Together the top 10 insurers wrote 42.07 percent of the reported premium, with all others reporting 57.93 percent.