The French life insurance market continued to climb in April with net inflows of 2.2 billion euros, up around 15% compared to the same period last year, according to figures published on Wednesday by France Insurers. “Life insurance maintains its development momentum,” rejoiced Franck Le Vallois, managing director of the professional federation, during a conference call. Since the start of the year, collections have amounted to 10.5 billion euros, “a level not reached for more than ten years” over this period, he added.
Contributions in life insurance, or deposits, reached 12.5 billion euros last month, 0.5 billion euros less than in April 2021. The fall is concentrated in euro funds, while unit-linked contributions, riskier but potentially more profitable, remained stable.
This movement is explained by inflation, according to Philippe Crevel, director of the Circle of savings. “The real return on euro funds is in negative territory,” he noted in a statement. Philippe Crevel believes that the euro funds “could be twice less remunerated than the livret A” if the rate of the latter is well raised in the summer, which the Banque de France expects.
1.847 billion euros in assets in April
Net collection is still progressing because benefits, or withdrawals, have fallen more than contributions: they have lost 0.8 billion euros compared to April 2021, to 10.3 billion. In total, at the end of April, outstanding life insurance contracts reached 1.847 billion euros, up 1.1% over one year.
According to France Assureurs, the dynamic of life insurance is fueled by retirement savings plans (PER), a product launched in 2019 as part of its Pacte law to encourage the French to invest in the economy in order to supplement their retirement pensions, which gained 122,400 insured in April. Life insurance has been a major success with savers since 2021, after suffering in 2020 when the French preferred to turn to safe haven investments such as the livret A.
The Banque de France will also initiate a discussion this summer with life insurance players, its president François Villeroy de Galhau said on Tuesday on the sidelines of the publication of the annual report of the Prudential Control and Resolution Authority (ACPR). ). He believes that the remuneration for these contracts must be fairer and more transparent.