Insurers Adjust to Aging U.S. Population
USA Today Online (07/14/03) p.10; Dugas, Christine

The Hartford Financial Services Group reduced its life insurance premiums for those 70 years of age and older by between 5 percent and 20 percent this year, as Americans begin to live longer due to advances in medical technology. Many other insurance companies are raising their age limits and adding more price categories for seniors. Insurers appear to be also taking a closer look at the effect of age, determining that overweight older Americans are healthier than those who are underweight, for example. However, even though insurers are lowering premiums and limits for the elderly, older Americans only make up 4 percent of life insurance sales. Older Americans tend to opt for investment and death benefit plans, rather than term life insurance policies that only provide a death benefit, but as rates continue to drop, experts predict that more of the elderly could begin purchasing life insurance.

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