Thursday, August 09, 2007

In the wrong business

Britain's largest insurer is in the news today, having totted up the costs of the recent inclement weather at about £400m. It all comes across as a bit of a whinge, given the imminent premium increases, but should it be? They're in the business of taking money off folk for insurance against a variety of events which all have a greater or lesser chance of occurring. When it goes against them, we get pronouncements such as the one linked to. At all other times, they're laughing. If paying out on some of the policies they more than willingly sold is such a problem is such a big problem, then they're in completely the wrong business.
It reminds me very much of a good friend of mine who runs a small chain of bookies. When Frankie Dettori rode through the card at Ascot that time (i.e. he won all seven races on the day), he was down about quarter of a million on the day. But he had the good grace to let me know he'd recouped it all by the time the week was out, rather than go bleating to anyone who would listen about losing money in the short-term.
Bloody Norwich Union. They want it all ways. Trouble is, they're probably going to get it.

1 comment:

Gary said...

I keep getting calls from Norwich Union asking me if I'd like to take out private health insurance and today I got one from another blagging insurance company doing the same thing - why would I want to buy health insurance from a company who don't own a hospital or employ a single doctor - who do I ring when I'm laying on the road under a bus ?

I ask these questions of the telesales people until they hang up, its fun.