Insurance News

Obama administration listens to insurer concerns

Posted on: June 14, 2009

WASHINGTON—Obama administration officials met with representatives of the insurance industry to discuss regulatory reform and other matters.The White House, which already has held similar meetings with representatives of other financial services industries, met with insurance industry representatives late Thursday.“They were interested in hearing from the insurers,” said Jimi Grande, vp in the Washington office of the National Assn. of Mutual Insurance Cos.

“I think the administration made it clear that they want to devise a systemic risk overseer to help avoid a repeat of some of the financial troubles we’re seeing,” said Mr. Grande. “It was a broad-ranging discussion and they did more listening than talking. They seemed to be very willing to hear all of the concerns of each of the groups in the room, and I thought they were particularly sensitive to the small Main Street financial services companies that were not a part of the cause of the current financial crisis. Obviously, they understood that property/casualty insurance is fundamentally different from banking or any of the other financial services.”Mr. Grande and other sources familiar with the meeting said the administration is interested in consumer protection and international issues as well as regulatory reform and systemic risk. But one source familiar with the meeting said the administration indicated it has not decided whether to support optional federal charters for insurers.

Copyright © 2009 Crain Communications, Inc.

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