Changing regulatory capital regimes: implications and market reactions

February 2016

In the last decade, the financial services sector has experienced a sea change in regulation and supervision. Local, regional, and global authorities enacted a host of requirements intended to modernize supervision and prevent many of the problems associated with the financial crisis. However, many of the most significant insurance requirements are just beginning to take shape. The European Union’s revised prudential regime for insurers, Solvency II, came into force on January 1, 2016. And the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS) and the Financial Stability Board (FSB) continue to advance the global supervisory agenda through the drafting of capital requirements for systemically important insurers and the insurance capital standard (ICS). Each of these regional and global work streams will profoundly affect the largest insurers and are likely to prompt even more changes in existing local regulatory regimes.  

On December 8, 2015, non-executive directors, executives, and supervisors met in London to discuss Solvency II’s pending implementation, the evolving IAIS agenda, and how markets may react to new solvency requirements and metrics. For a list of participants in this meeting and related discussions, see Appendix 1. This ViewPoints provides a summary of these discussions and is guided by the following questions:  

  • How might Solvency II evolve in the next few years?

  • How are insurers translating value to investors in light of new solvency requirements and metrics?

  • How might the global regulatory agenda evolve, and what challenges does it face?