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International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
Denmark’s insurance sector is highly developed with a particularly high penetration and density in the life sector. Traditionally, work-related life insurance and pension savings are offered as a combined package, and life insurance companies dominate the market for mandatory pension schemes for employees. The high penetration explains the overall size of the insurance sector, which exceeds those of peers from other Nordic countries and various other EU member states. Assets managed by the insurance industry amounted to 146 percent of the GDP at end-2018, compared to 72 percent for the EU average.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This Technical Note discusses the findings and recommendations in the Financial Sector Assessment Program for Spain in the areas of insurance sector supervision and regulation. The Spanish insurance market is complex owing to the presence of large numbers of insurance groups. The supervisory culture in the Directorate General of Insurance and Pension Funds (DGSFP) appears to be reactive or compliance focused. The supervisory focus should shift toward qualitative as well as quantitative review of the insurer’s key methods and assumptions, including the proportionate verification of technical provisions and capital requirements. The DGSFP should also develop areas that are now relevant in the Solvency II framework, such as governance and risk management.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This Technical Note discusses the findings and recommendations in the Financial Sector Assessment Program (FSAP) for Sweden in the areas of insurance sector regulation and supervision. The regulatory and supervisory framework has been enhanced since the 2011 FSAP. The Finansinspektionen (Financial Supervisory Authority, FI) is the principal regulatory body, with responsibility for prudential regulation, consumer protection, and macroprudential regulation. Some measures are recommended to strengthen solvency regulation further. Solvency II should be applied in full to occupational pensions insurance, unless the government decides to create a separate national regime for occupational pensions, as exists in many other countries.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This Technical Note discusses the findings and recommendations in the Financial Sector Assessment Program for the Netherlands on the insurance and pension sectors. The governance, accountability, and internal processes of the supervisors, operating under a well-functioning twin-peaks model, are robust. With two-tier boards that include independent members, and an internal audit department, the governance structure of both supervisors is vigorous. Detailed documentation supports the internal processes. Discussions are underway to determine a new structure for the pension system, which may include shifting risks to the participants.
Mr. Charles Enoch, Wouter Bossu, Carlos Caceres, and Ms. Diva Singh


With growth slowing across much of the Latin America as a result of the end of the commodity supercycle and economic rebalancing in China, as well as fragmentation of the international banking system, policies to stimulate growth are needed. This book examines the financial landscapes of seven Latin American economies—Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Panama, Peru, and Uruguay—and makes a case for them to pursue regional financial integration. Chapters set out the benefits to the region of financial integration, the barriers to cross-border activity in banks, insurance companies, pension funds, and capital markets, as well as recommendations to address these barriers. Finally, the volume makes the case that regional integration now could be a step toward global integration in the short term.

International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This paper discusses findings of the Detailed Assessment of Observance of the Insurance Core Principles on Denmark. Insurance regulation in Denmark has a good level of compliance with the Insurance Core Principles. A particular strength of the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority’s approach is its close focus on key risks in the sector and its readiness to require action by companies to address vulnerabilities. Regular, even daily monitoring of market risk sensitivities is carried out on life insurers’ balance sheets. In nonlife insurance, regular testing of a number of key performance ratios helps to highlight potential weaknesses and to support early intervention. There is comprehensive oversight of the reinsurance programs of the nonlife companies in particular.
Gregorio Impavido, Mr. Heinz Rudolph, and Mr. Luigi Ruggerone
CESEE banks are reducing foreign funding sources in response to reduced external imbalances, reduced ability to tap international savings, banking group own strategies, initiatives by some regulators, and consistently with uncertainties surrounding the future of the banking union project. In the medium term, the global regulatory agenda and the high foreign presence and stock of FX loans exert opposite forces on rebalancing trends. In the long-term, any funding “new normal” will be determined by the future design of the EU financial architecture. In the meantime, limiting leverage, the use of FX loans and promoting aggregate saving through macro policies and capital market reforms will increase resilience against shocks going forward.
Mr. John Kiff, Michael Kisser, Mauricio Soto, and Mr. S. E Oppers
This paper provides the first empirical assessment of the impact of life expectancy assumptions on the liabilities of private U.S. defined benefit (DB) pension plans. Using detailed actuarial and financial information provided by the U.S. Department of Labor, we construct a longevity variable for each pension plan and then measure the impact of varying life expectancy assumptions across plans and over time on pension plan liabilities. The results indicate that each additional year of life expectancy increases pension liabilities by about 3 to 4 percent. This effect is not only statistically highly significant but also economically: each year of additional life expectancy would increase private U.S. DB pension plan liabilities by as much as $84 billion.
International Monetary Fund
A full assessment of Israel’s compliance with the Insurance Core Principles (ICPs) of the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS) is presented. The Minister of Finance bears the political responsibility for supervisory oversight of the Israeli insurance system. Nonlife insurance accounts for about 50 percent of total premiums in the country, and motor premiums make up about 50 percent of that total. The Israeli insurance sector has been hit hard by the financial crisis. The Israeli stock market has fallen by 51 percent, sharply impacting companies’ earnings in 2008.