The Growing Gender Gap for Life Insurance

Jan 18, 2017

The fact that more men have life insurance coverage than women is nothing new. Since the industry’s inception, more men have had coverage than women. For most of recent history, the gap in coverage between men and women has been steadily closing. Between 2010 and 2016, however, it grew. Today, we discuss why this is the case and what it means for you, as an insurance broker.

The Data

According to the Life Insurance Marketing and Research Association (LIMRA), 56% of women and 62% of men had life insurance coverage in 2016. In 2010, 57% of women and 61% of men had life insurance. This may not seem like a drastic difference, but a gap growth of two percentage points in half a decade is definitely noteworthy.

Reasons for Growing Gap

Several reasons may account for the growing gender gap in life insurance coverage. Reasons newly insured women often cite for living without life insurance coverage for so long include misconceptions about the cost of life insurance and a belief that life insurance is intended only for a household’s primary breadwinner. LIMRA’s research suggests that career choices (women are more likely to gravitate toward jobs that don’t offer generous employment benefits) could account for some of the gap.

An Opportunity for Insurance Professionals

Awareness of the growing gender gap in life insurance should be viewed as an opportunity by industry professionals. Insurance providers should rewrite existing plans to improve coverage for women. Brokers, for their part, should focus more of their marketing efforts on reaching uninsured women. If more women believed that life insurance was crucial and knew it could be affordable to them, more would probably have it.

Are you an independent broker looking to increase your client base? For access to tools and resources that can make your marketing strategy and materials more effective, call Brokers Alliance at (800) 290-7226.

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