America has become Lloyd's of London's largest single market for the first time, according to figures released this week.

And it is anticipated the US will grow to represent half of the 300-year-old market's revenue in four years' time.

A breakdown of business for Lloyd's year 2000 underwriting shows the US accounts for 35% (£4.3bn) of the London-based insurance market's gross premium income, compared with a 34% share for the UK.

In 1999, the UK represented 35%, followed by the US at 33%.