Advisers have lost confidence in the number of life insurance sales they will make over the next three months, research commissioned by Zurich Financial Services Australia has found.
Zurich’s Risk Adviser Sentiment Index – compiled off the back of a survey of “202 advisers active in the life risk market” and conducted by Beaton Research and Consulting – found advisers had lost confidence in their short-term sales outlook.
The index found adviser confidence levels had dropped 10.1 per cent, falling to a level of 4.78.
Speaking to Risk Adviser about the findings, Zurich head of marketing and communications Richard Dunkerley said respondents pointed out their lower confidence stemmed from the current economic conditions and poor publicity turning prospective clients away.
“There are advisers that suggest the poor kind of publicity that they receive has potentially seen some customers shy away from seeking advice,” Mr Dunkerley said.
“[Also] there is no doubt the stagnant state of the economy is a contributor as well,” he said. “At a general level we are seeing unemployment on the rise [and] we are seeing economic growth that is low.”
Mr Dunkerley also highlighted that a number of measures introduced by the federal government is leading consumers to reconsider seeking advice for life insurance.
“They put that levy on incomes over $180,000 which [also] happened at the same time as an increase in the Medicare levy,” Mr Dunkerley said.
“So you find that among the higher-income earners they’re looking for ways to counteract some of those increased charges and levies.”
“So if you like, there [are] economic provisions that are probably putting household budgets under a bit more pressure than has previously been the case,” he said.