Germany: Insurance, Expansion, and Setbacks

Peter Borscheid

in World Insurance

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780199657964
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191744709 | DOI:
Germany: Insurance, Expansion, and Setbacks

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This chapter traces the history of the German insurance industry. It was only in the mid-nineteenth century that a German insurance industry can properly be spoken of, one which demonstrated sound technical skills, appropriate support institutions, and real growth potential. Until this time, there were only a few pioneering insurance enterprises active, which tested the viability of the market, and sought reliable ways to organize and do business. They met with mixed success, but most were open to foreign ideas and some orientated their business for cross-border activity. Indeed, by the time it took-off in the mid-nineteenth century, the industry already boasted international linkages established through numerous channels. The century's three major lines of insurance business — fire, marine, and life — owed their successful rise largely to international cooperation agreements and input from abroad. Academics and practitioners from various countries worked closely together in preparing start-ups, while newly founded companies looked to foreign experts for advice or copied the underwriting practices of successful industry pioneers from abroad.

Keywords: German insurance industry; insurance business; fire insurance; marine insurance; life insurance; underwriting; insurance history

Chapter.  9643 words. 

Subjects: International Business

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