UNDERSTANDING THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN COMMERCIAL AND PERSONAL LINES

The Commercial Insurance Market

Property/casualty insurance can be broken down into two major categories: commercial lines or types of insurance and personal lines. Personal lines, as the term suggests, includes coverages for individuals—auto and homeowners insurance. Commercial lines, which accounts for about half of U.S. property/casualty insurance industry premium, includes the many kinds of insurance products designed for businesses.

Commercial insurance performs a critical role in the world economy. Without it, the economy could not function. Insurers essentially protect the economic system from failure by assuming the risks inherent in the production of goods and services.


There are over seven million small businesses in the U.S., ranging from construction firms to grocery stores to home-based businesses. All have one thing in common: Without the right insurance coverage, each could be wiped out by a disaster or a lawsuit. In addition, almost all businesses are accountable for the safety of their workers and bear responsibility for injuries suffered on the job. The I.I.I.’s Insuring Your Business website provides information on what coverages businesses should consider as well as what business owners should know about risk management and loss control.


Net Premiums Written, Personal And Commercial Lines, 2020



Top 10 Writers Of Commercial Lines Insurance By Direct Premiums Written, 2020


​RANK

GROUP/COMPANY

​DIRECT PREMIUMS WRITTEN

MARKET SHARE (2)

1

​CHUBB LTD

$19,399,859

5.5%

2

​TRAVELERS

18,815,626

5.3

3

​LIBERTY MUTUAL

17,057,397

4.8

​4

ZURICH INS GROUP

13,358,067

3.8

5

AMERICAN INTERNATIONA GRP

11,887,670

3.3

6

BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY INC

11,601,352

3.3

7

CNA FINANCIAL CORP

11,302,724

3.2

9

HARTFORD FINANCIAL SERV.

9,575,425

2.7

10

NATIONWIDE MUTUAL GRP

8,812,305

2.5


The Commercial Insurance Market Property/casualty insurance can be broken down into two major categories: commercial lines or types of insurance and personal lines. Personal lines, as the term suggests, includes coverages for individuals—auto and homeowners insurance. Commercial lines, which accounts for about half of U.S. property/casualty insurance industry premium, includes the many kinds of insurance products designed for businesses. Commercial insurance performs a critical role in the world economy. Without it, the economy could not function. Insurers essentially protect the economic system from failure by assuming the risks inherent in the production of goods and services. For further information on commercial lines see the Commercial Insurance website. There are over seven million small businesses in the U.S., ranging from construction firms to grocery stores to home-based businesses. All have one thing in common: Without the right insurance coverage, each could be wiped out by a disaster or a lawsuit. In addition, almost all businesses are accountable for the safety of their workers and bear responsibility for injuries suffered on the job. The I.I.I.’s Insuring Your Business website provides information on what coverages businesses should consider as well as what business owners should know about risk management and loss control. (See small business.) Net Premiums Written, Personal And Commercial Lines, 2020


Incurred Losses For Commercial Insurance, 2016-2020 (1)

($000)

​YEAR

​INCURRED LOSSES

​2016

$124,688,807

​2017

137,939,620

2018

148,768,919

2019

155,123,166

2020

172,003,363