Comments (27)

 
  • VP in PE - Other
Sep 25, 2010 - 5:28pm

If you're interested in insurance you may like underwriting, and I've heard of underwriters moving all over insurance companies after a few years (to actuarial, ops, etc.). But I hope you talk to a few people who currently work as underwriters before deciding to pursue it as a career.

 
Sep 26, 2010 - 2:04pm

wanderer:
But I hope you talk to a few people who currently work as underwriters before deciding to pursue it as a career.

If anybody on here does, can I send you a PM?

By the way, thanks a lot for the info.

 
Nov 8, 2010 - 5:55pm

How easily could one move from insurance underwriting, to some sort of investment management position?

 
Nov 9, 2010 - 10:03am

econ:
How easily could one move from insurance underwriting, to some sort of investment management position?

Had a friend that started out selling insurance, picked up some of the Series licenses and is working at some investment management firm now, not sure if it actually pretains to this situation but could be something to think about

If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford
 
Nov 9, 2010 - 1:32pm

soccerz30:
why would anyone want to do this? It sounds like the most boring crap ever

IB or bust?

 
Nov 9, 2010 - 1:52pm

no not at all dude....I'm just saying there are so many things to do as a career. I'm in no way an advocate of doing IB for life either (currently doing it )....but c'mon, are you honestly telling me working in the insurance industry is something you've always wanted to do? It just seems like such a dull industry to me

 
Nov 9, 2010 - 3:06pm

Insurance doesn't necessarily sound dull to me, but I'm also not that excited about it either. I'm hoping to get into investment management down the road, but I'm just not sure I can get that in the short-term, and am considering other options in the meantime. Underwriting sounds more relevant to something like fixed income analysis, than say, market research (but maybe I'm wrong). Any advice on other careers I should consider?

 
Nov 13, 2010 - 4:19pm

My dad is an underwriter (now VP) for a reinsurance company...he has never averaged longer than 9-5 in his life, and while the startoff money wasn't fantastic, he now makes a very large amount. He also says he would never choose to have another job.

 
Nov 13, 2010 - 8:56pm

Do you mind if I ask how much money you're talking? If you don't want to share with everyone, you can always PM me. Also, how long did it take him to get up to VP?

 
Nov 14, 2010 - 2:57pm

I used to intern in an Insurance company, as an underwriter; it was policies for large companies etc. The work in itself is not quite exciting, but it is the best definition of office work: no team, everyone stays in their cubicle until 5 pm. Yes, the work is 9-5.

As for pay, after 6-7 years you can expect about 100K. They used to post the salaries in the career section in their web portal. It is however the same that you would see in www.glassdoor.com

Yes you can move into Actuary and similar stuff, but bare in mind that you would need to meet some minimum requirements such as having an MBA, passing some examinations. Hope that helps.

 
Nov 14, 2010 - 10:34pm

I don't think anyone would be able to narrow down who I am so i will go ahead...my dad makes about 500k each year. I think it took him 20 years at the same company, which granted is alot (but not really for the insurance industry since titles don't exactly work in a similar time frame as banking), but he never got his MBA and was definitely making over 100k by 30, 200k by 38, etc. This is a job in suburban area so the prices aren't nearly as high as NYC, and he spends 2 out the 5 days of work playing golf/eating food with clients, along with complaining about work whenever he doesn't leave by 5:30.

 
Nov 15, 2010 - 10:01am

Does he enjoy the day-to-day responsibilities/tasks? Or does he just enjoy the pay/hours? A lot of people claim underwriting is boring, so it'd be interesting to hear what he likes/dislikes about it.

 
Nov 15, 2010 - 3:50pm

Go for Reinsurance companies/brokers (google)

Munich Re, Gen Re, Swiss Re, AonBenfield, Guy Carpenter, Willis Re

Skip insurance companies...unless you get into their Investment Management Program (like John Hancock)

Hours are definitely a plus: 9-5, easy to take off days, not a lot of time-stress duties

Pay is pretty standard for non-banking financial services entry level: $55k-70k.

********************************* “The American father is never seen in London. He passes his life entirely in Wall Street and communicates with his family once a month by means of a telegram in cipher.” - Oscar Wilde
 
Nov 15, 2010 - 4:26pm

My dad was qualified as an insurance underwriter (had his CLU designation) but decided to work in insurance sales instead for MetLife. In the late 70s, when he was in his early 20s, he made 20K his first year, 30K his second year, 60K his third year, and broke 100K in his 5th year (in 1982, that was considered a shit load of money for a single guy). That's when he quit and started his own company. He says that the people he used to work with are now making close to 7 figures. So my point is that there is a lot of scope in insurance.

-MBP
 
Nov 15, 2010 - 9:18pm

veritas14: How easy is it to transition from insurance to reinsurance? Also, just to be clear, are you talking about specifically underwriting at reinsurance companies, or do you mean working in reinsurance in general is a solid career choice?

everythingsucks: Wow, 7 figures, huh. Are those guys doing sales or something else?

 
Nov 17, 2010 - 11:02am

Do NOT work for an insurance company unless you are in the investment management program, or corp finance.

Reinsurance companies: the front office equivalent roles are: Reinsurance Underwriter and the Investment management side. Doubtful they hire entry level kids for corp finance.

********************************* “The American father is never seen in London. He passes his life entirely in Wall Street and communicates with his family once a month by means of a telegram in cipher.” - Oscar Wilde
 
Nov 17, 2010 - 3:51pm

He actually does like his job, and like I said, he says he would never choose another job. His reinsurance company technically hires out of undergrad (which he did), but a good portion had previous job experience. The main thing I noticed is how laid back the environment is. Deadlines are essentially non-existant and my dad would walk around the office looking for random people to talk to and such.

 
Nov 17, 2010 - 11:21pm

I worked as an underwriter for just about a year at a major medical carrier. The job is fairly easily, and as such breeds complaceny. Most underwriter offices are just sweatshops with little room for advancement besides titles like Underwriter Consultant or Senior Underwriter. Most of the smarter people that aren't scared of people get into sales.A good sales rep can average around 200k a year, while an underwriter with 5 years of exp would probably be lucky to get 75k.
Besides getting into sales, other career paths are moving to the brokering consulting side at a firm like Towers Watson, Willis, Aon, or Mercer. These firms will offer much more competitive pay but the hours can be a lot worse with firm deadlines and demanding clients.

 
Nov 18, 2010 - 10:01am

Does the average sales rep really make $200K? That sounds like it's too good to be true. Unless most sales reps quit because they can't make anything, and you're just left with the guys pulling down good money (survival of the fittest in the data).

 
Nov 18, 2010 - 1:58pm

econ:
Does the average sales rep really make $200K? That sounds like it's too good to be true. Unless most sales reps quit because they can't make anything, and you're just left with the guys pulling down good money (survival of the fittest in the data).

survivorship bias. bingo. you nailed it.

********************************* “The American father is never seen in London. He passes his life entirely in Wall Street and communicates with his family once a month by means of a telegram in cipher.” - Oscar Wilde
 
Nov 18, 2010 - 1:58pm

Insurance companies are a lifetime gig.

You have to start out in a grad program, build experience, network within the firm, etc. Maybe get a part-time MBA.

They are corporate culture heavy. You have to be a company man and drink the Koolaid.

If you are patient, you can make a great living without much stress.

But to me, being patient IS stressful...so...

********************************* “The American father is never seen in London. He passes his life entirely in Wall Street and communicates with his family once a month by means of a telegram in cipher.” - Oscar Wilde
 
Jan 19, 2011 - 10:37am

veritas14:
Insurance companies are a lifetime gig.

Does this mean you can move around the insurance company easily? I don't think I want to be an underwriter for life, but I think I could enjoy doing it at the entry-level, as long as I have the potential to move into marketing, finance, and other departments. The one thing I don't want, is to be stuck in underwriting, if it turns out I don't like it.

 
Nov 18, 2010 - 4:27pm

They either leavce or get filed. I know some companies give their reps like 12-18 months to get up to goal or they get canned. Spencer James, a headhunter firm for insurance reps, does an annual compensation survey. The highlights for 2009 were:
Years in Industry: Less than 5 years $110,000
5-10 years $ 199,750
10-15 years $258,000
Over 15 years$257,500
If you google Spencer James group you can find the whole survey in PDF

 
Jan 19, 2011 - 10:38am

Underwriter at an insurance company? (Originally Posted: 01/04/2017)

Anyone have any insights about underwriter - trade credit role? I searched on the forum but was confused, is it just about performing due diligence? What's expected on a daily basis? What skillet will be developed?

Thanks in advance for any comments.

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