BOISE, ID – January 20, 2015 — Clearwater Analytics®, the leading provider of web-based investment accounting and reporting for insurance companies, today announced the results and analysis of the "2014 Insurance Investment Benchmark Survey for Treasury and Accounting Professionals." As the first of its kind, the survey explored the key investment operations and accounting and reporting challenges that North American insurance companies face in the current low interest rate and ever-changing regulatory environment. The report summarizes survey results, and presents key findings on topics ranging from data management and operations, to investment accounting processes, performance measurement, regulatory reporting, risk analytics, and investment policy compliance monitoring that insurance companies can use for benchmarking purposes. Over 400 finance and accounting professionals with investment portfolios ranging from less than $100M to larger than $20B from nearly every insurance carrier type responded to the survey.
The response to one survey question in particular proved to be especially insightful: "What are your biggest investment-related concerns?" As the responses to this keystone question were analyzed, a number of key themes emerged, which formed the basis of the report.
For chief investment officers, treasurers, chief risk officers, and general investment staff, these themes were:
- The unpredictable investment and regulatory environment
- Performance analysis and investment reporting
- Managing risk analytics and portfolio compliance
For chief accounting officers, statutory accountants, and general accounting staff, these themes were:
- Operational efficiency
- Challenging regulatory environments
- Data management
"The report reveals how treasury and accounting professionals at insurers across the U.S. view the current investment and regulatory environment, rate the efficiency of their accounting operations, and evaluate portfolio performance, risk, and investment policy compliance," Insurance Manager Richard Pullara of Clearwater Analytics said. "From these results, chief financial officers, chief investment officers, treasurers, accounting managers, statutory accountants, and other finance professionals can gain valuable insight into industry trends, challenges, and benchmark themselves against their peers."
Some examples include:
- 22% of insurers responded that they spend 30+ days to close the books at year-end
- 82% of CFOs are very confident in their security master data, but only 47% of accounting and investment staff share that confidence
- 75% of respondents stated that accounting regulations have an impact on their investment decisions
"The survey confirmed that, more than ever before, investment and accounting professionals need access to accurate investment information more frequently. Time must be spent analyzing data, not manually entering or processing it," said Tyler Haws, director of business development at Clearwater Analytics. "With this insightful data, insurers can benchmark themselves against their peers, and also decide how these results may impact their strategy moving into 2015 to free themselves from the menial and move to the meaningful."
Insurance investment and accounting professionals who would like to view the survey report can access it on the Clearwater website at: https://clearwater-analytics.com/resources/2015-insurance-investment-benchmark-survey-report.