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According to information prepared by Deloitte UK in April 2019, the UK government has published practical guidance on the social security contributions position for UK and EU internationally mobile workers if the UK leaves the EU without a deal and actions UK employers would then need to take for UK outbound assignees to the EU. This follows on from draft legislation published by the Department of Work and Pensions

A report published by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in April 2019, Under Pressure: The Squeezed Middle Class, suggests that governments need to do more to support middle-class households who are struggling to maintain their economic weight and lifestyles as their stagnating incomes fail to keep up with the rising costs of housing and education. This new analysis “delivers a bleak picture and a call for

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in March 2019 released the ninth edition of Society at a Glance, the biennial OECD overview of social indicators. The full report can be accessed here. This edition of the report addresses the growing demand for quantitative evidence on social well-being and its trends, and focuses on LGBT groups (lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgender) and their lack of acceptance in

  With the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union delayed until May 22, 2019, if the Brexit deal is accepted, or April 12, 2019, if rejected, many clients of the insurance industry are unsure of what to do in either case. Lockton in March 2019 released an advisory: Brexit update: What US multinational employers need to know to help its clients and others in the industry during these

Insurance Europe in March 2019 published a checklist regarding the insurance implications of a no-deal Brexit. Insurance Europe is the European insurance and reinsurance federation, representing all types of insurance and reinsurance carriers. Intended for the general public but relevant for business travelers and short-term secondments, the checklist deals with: Motor insurance – Currently, motorists insured in any EU member state can drive their vehicle in any other EU member

New GDP data published in March 2019 by the Conference Board shows that growth has slowed to 2.6 per cent in the United States for the final quarter of the year, despite growing at nearly four per cent last year. Growth is still above the U.S. economy’s long-term two-per cent trend. The U.S. can expect a further slowdown in growth due to fading effects of an anemic fiscal stimulus,

OECD in March 2019 released a new survey, “Risks that Matter”, which asked over 22,000 people aged 18 to 70 years old in 21 countries* about their worries and concerns, and their opinions on how well they think their governments help them tackle social and economic risks. The nationally-representative survey finds that many people in OECD countries believe public services and social benefits are difficult to reach and inadequate.

Randstad in March 2019 released the first quarter 2019 edition of its Workmonitor report. Workmonitor’s Mobility Index, which tracks employee confidence and captures the likelihood of an employee changing jobs within the next six months, provides a comprehensive understanding of sentiments and trends in the job market. Besides mobility, the survey addresses employee satisfaction and personal motivation as well as a rotating set of themed questions. The report for

People respond to voice warnings, not to standard fire alarms, and evacuations are speedier when timely information is communicated, according to a study released in March 2019 by Siemens Building Technologies. It has been noted many times, in multiple studies, that building occupants often ignore or are slow to respond to standard fire alarm sounders. There is even a tendency for people to continue with their activities, oblivious to

According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)’s and Interim Economic Outlook published in March 2019, global growth is slowing, showing signs of decoupling, with greater concern for Europe than the US, which is experiencing a slight slowdown. The slowdown has been faster than anticipated a few months ago; growth in Europe has been particularly disappointing, as trade growth both within the EU and with external partners

Emerging markets will remain the growth engine for the global economy and the insurance industry over the next decade, according to the latest sigma report from Swiss Re Institute, published in March 2019. The study explores how the seven largest emerging markets will contribute more than 40% of global growth in the next decade, with China accounting for over a quarter of the global output. (The seven largest emerging

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in February 2019 released a new paper, titled “Trends in life expectancy in EU and other OECD countries” that reports on trends in life expectancy in the 28 EU countries and some other high-income OECD countries, and examines potential explanations for the slowdown in improvements in recent years. The slowing of improvements, which has been measured since 2011, has been greatest

Willis Towers Watson (WTW) in February 2019 published the 2019 edition its annual “Global benefits financing matrix and poolable coverages” table. An indispensable tool of the trade for global employee benefits practitioners, it is available for download as a PDF. The matrix “provides a complete listing of the eight global benefits networks, and their affiliated insurers across 200 countries and the offshore (third-country national or expat) capabilities for each.”

Gatehouse in February 2019 released its 2019 State of the Sector Report. A member of global brokerage Gallagher, London, UK-based Gatehouse is an internal communication agency providing consultancy on internal communications research. With over 820 responses from 40 countries, the report surveys the internal communication and employee engagement landscape. It also provides internal communications strategists with insights into careers, budgets and working practices, as well as insight into what

The Aon Benefits and Trends Survey 2019 published in January 2019 says that 97% of UK employers agree that employees’ expectations of their experience in the workplace are changing, and that employees’ top priorities now include flexible working hours, agile working, mental health, diversity and inclusion, and parental leave. The survey asks questions of over 200 UK employers of all sizes who work across a broad range of sectors.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in January 2019 published a new report revealing that public social spending in OECD countries was just above 20% of GDP on average in 2018. Public spending on areas such as pensions, healthcare, and unemployment benefits was highest in France (31.2%), Belgium (28.9%) and Denmark (28.7%) and lowest in Mexico (7.5%), Chile (10.9%) and Korea (11.1%). Pensions spending is the biggest

In mid-January 2019 the UK Parliament rejected the proposed European Union (EU)-UK agreement that provided for a more or less orderly Brexit. Two months ahead of the deadline, the British government is expected to further push for an approval of the agreement, but a disorderly separation may now be the most likely scenario. Accordingly, EU nations are getting ready to minimize expected disruptions. The European Commission, in December 2019, published

Global Benefits Vision: Now that Brexit seems to be upon us, let’s talk about how you see it impacting Lockton and the insurance world in general. Ian Cooper: It has been quite fascinating. Insurance providers, as we know, within the single market, can passport regulatory permissions and trade across Europe.

Published in December 2018, the OECD Pensions Outlook 2018 report examines how national pension systems are adapting to improve retirement outcomes. This has direct implications for the design and implementation of occupational pension plans. The report focuses on funded pensions and discusses how different pension tools can be combined to meet certain goals. It also considers how countries can improve financial, i.e. tax, incentives. This edition draws lessons from

Aon in December 2018 released a paper, The Contemporary Drivers of Mental Health, detailing factors driving poor employee mental health in the UK. Debt, separation and bullying are the personal issues of most concern to employers when it comes to employee mental health, according to a poll of employers. Of the 92 employers surveyed, 39 stated that money and debt were their biggest concerns for employee mental health, 27

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in November 2018 released the 2018 edition of Health at a Glance: Europe. This report is led by the European Commission and designed to assist member states in improving the health of their citizens and the performance of their health systems. The report cites “two overarching trends [that] warrant special mention”: [T]he steady increase in life expectancy has slowed considerably in

Accounting standard setting body IASB (International Accounting Standards Board) in November 2018 decided to defer the effective date for International Financial Reporting Standard (IFRS) 17 – Insurance Contracts – to January 1, 2022. IFRS 17 deals with the recognition of income arising from insurance contracts and its presentation in annual accounts. At the same time, the temporary exemption to IFRS 9 that was included in IFRS 4 also was

Employer-provided health care benefits costs are expected to increase modestly around the globe in 2019, according to the 2019 Global Medical Trends Survey of medical insurers published in November 2018 by Willis Towers Watson (WTW). Insurers blame the high cost of medical technology and the overuse and overprescribing of services as major factors in escalating costs and caution that soaring pharmacy costs will become a significant factor over the

Aon has identified that many UK employees do not accurately record sickness absence. Published in November 2018, this insight was obtained by conducting group risk market reviews for employers. Group risk insurers require information on who is absent, the reason for their absence, duration, and more information such as prognosis. Aon, through its market review activity, has seen that some employers either do not record their employees’ absences or

A survey conducted by Swiss Life in Switzerland, France, Germany, Austria, and the United Kingdom and published in November 2018 found that only 46% of respondents feel confident about their current financial situation. The differences in the individual countries are huge: 65% of Swiss respondents said they feel comfortable with their finances and only 27% feel financially stressed. By contrast, financial confidence in Austria (48%), Germany (44%) and the

According to figures released in October 2018 by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), global foreign direct investment (FDI) fell by 41% in the first half of 2018 to an estimated $470 billion from $800 billion in the same period in 2017, mainly due to large repatriations of accumulated foreign earnings from United States parent companies affiliates abroad. This comes on the heels of US tax

According to research published in October 2018 by Swiss Re Institute, the research arm of Swiss Re, the health protection gap in Asia reached US$1.8 trillion in 2017 and exhibits a growing trend. The corresponding global figure is $2.9 trillion, with the difference coming mostly from Latin America ($0.7 trillion) and Africa ($0.3 trillion). Central and Eastern Europe comes in at $143 billion. To put these figures into perspective, in