LMI Group’s CEO, Allan Manning, was quoted in a special report produced by the Finanical Review’s Shane Nichols. The report was on the farming sector and Allan was contacted as an industry expert. Part of the article is reproduced below.

"Dr Allan Manning, of LMI Group (loss management, risk assessment and technical advisers), assists claimants as a claim preparer and speaks from experience about February’s catastrophic fires in Victoria. He says claims so far indicate that, “the Victorian farmers have not been transferring the insurable risk to the insurance industry, and it seems the prime reason is because of cost”.

“During the tough times, farmers see insurance as a cost they can reduce. The farmers I’ve talked to say things like ‘two years ago I stopped insuring my stock, and last year I stopped insuring the fences’ – and of course Murphy’s Law is that a drought usually ends with a big flood or a big storm and then they find themselves uninsured and carrying significant losses.”

The farmers in Victoria, NSW, and Tasmania carry a much higher cost of insurance because of taxation.




"A $100 premium in Victoria attracts a $63 fire brigade levy, then 10 per cent GST on the premium and the fire brigade levy, and then there’s 10 per cent stamp duty on the premium, the levy and the GST. By the time they pay everything, the $100 premium becomes $197.40 – almost doubling the cost of the insurance,” says Manning. “The highest incidence of fire in the world is California, and they pay 2.5 per cent tax.”

The lack of business interruption insurance is common, says Manning. A simplified version of this is business continuance insurance, which is quite cheap to obtain. Manning says that of the 106 farms affected by the Eyre Peninsula in 2005, only six had any form of business interruption cover."