?For the insurance sector, the turmoil caused by banks’ overzealous lending to both private equity firms and poor Americans has caused less of a crash and more of a wobble.
Share prices among UK insurers have been edging their way back upwards. Aviva moved to about the same level as before the price tumble towards the end of July. Legal & General followed suite, bringing its share price up to levels above those of mid 2006.
Brit too had recovered from the July tumble and was already higher than in April this year. Royal & SunAlliance’s share price bounced back to pre-crash levels and was already higher than a year ago and Zurich’s shares were higher than in February.
But not everyone was smiling. Royal Bank of Scotland was bumping along the bottom, unable to bounce back with the same vigour.
Chaucer’s shares have been wobbling since before the recent sub-prime sinking. Its price has been up and down since the turn of the year but was by Tuesday at least higher than before that.
Broker Jardine Lloyd Thompson’s shares ploughed their own furlough, almost regardless of the rest of the market. A longer term view would suggest that it has simply steadied after the falls over the past five years. You would need to go back to about the turn of the millennium for a significantly lower share price.
And Benfield’s downwards slide since the beginning of the year may have come to a halt. However, it is too early to tell if they will all be reaching for the champers just yet?