July 17, 2017

This time they’ve gone too far! Mail Online, a digital newspaper in which ladies in bikinis frolic on beaches while tittle-tattle is traded and foreigners deplored, has branded insurers greedy.

“Insurers raise their prics [sic] at up to FIVE times the rate of inflation”, the Mail wailed in a singularly irresponsible headline (see below). That’s right, the Mail insists, a motor policy today costs 120% more than it did a decade back.

Based on nothing more substantial than the findings of a report by something called the Office for National Statistics, the Mail Online has now seen fit to tar insurers with the same brush as charlatans like energy firms, universities and private schools.

But insurance firms haven’t put their prices up by five times the rate of inflation. Policyholders have, by making claims. And claimant lawyers have, by aiding and abetting them. And the government has, by raising IPT and messing with the Ogden rate. And motor manufacturers have by making cars too complicated.

All insurers have tried to do is keep their much belaboured and calumnified heads above water, to carry on providing a priceless public good, while all around them sponging leeches clamour for something for nothing.

OK, insurance may be a bit pricey. But what else, short of opiates, delivers peace of mind like an insurance policy? And it’s still better value than school fees which have gone up by 159% since 2006 and Gas (up 125%). Let’s face it, food (up 37%) and booze (up 62%) aren’t even that much cheaper.

“Millions of people are paying the price for apathy by allowing big corporations to take them for a ride,” claims Guy Ankle of Moneysavingsuperexpert, quoted in the Mail. Are they really, though?

Those millions of people should be grateful they’re even doing any riding. Sure, motor insurance may have gone up by 120% while the cost of flat screen TVs has dropped by 60%. But, without the motor insurance that motor insurers remain selflessly committed to providing – even though none of them has ever made any money doing it, and it will all soon be taken over by robots anyway (see recent story) – nobody would even be allowed to drive their cars!

So maybe the Mail and its skinflint readers, with their so-called spiralling bills, should just stop whinging and cough up for the good of a vital national industry.


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