Danny Walkinshaw looks at the latest insurance stories online

The insurance industry seems to have dodged the doom and gloom that has engulfed the economy – so far. However, a handful of insurers announced job losses and falling profits last year and it may be only a matter of time before such revelations start to dominate web traffic once again.

As the market braces itself for bad news, visitors to insurancetimes.co.uk were understandably keen to read a story titled “Brokers warned ‘2009 is seismic year’ ”. The warning came from David Grier, managing director of Alphatec, who said customers would be looking for greater transparency in commercial relationships as well as reductions in the cost of insurance.

But the most read story of the week included those familiar words “Giles” and “acquisition”. The consolidator’s first purchase of 2009 – the London broker LRG Insurance Services – demonstrated that, as our News analysis suggested last week (8 January, pages 14-15), there is still cash available for deals.

Another acquisition, this one by WR Berkley, also made the online top five.

Don’t forget you can log on to insurancetimes.co.uk each morning for a round-up of all the latest industry news. Also, check back for breaking news and exclusive analysis, as well as plenty of online-only content, including the popular “My favourites” feature. This week’s list is submitted by Paul Hirst, RSA’s commercial business development director.

The January edition of Insurance Agenda is also available to online subscribers.

Most Read

1. Giles seals first acquisition of 2009

Consolidator snaps up London broker

2. Brokers warned '2009 is seismic year'

Credit crisis will mean more transparency

3. John Kitson's Blog

4. RBS to drop insurance sale?

Paper reports Direct Line and Churchill to stay with bank

5. WR Berkley acquires Irish firm

Acquisition establishes WR Berkley Insurance Ireland

My Favourites - Paul Hirst

www.apple.com/itunes

I always spend some time at the weekend on this site downloading music to get me through the long train commute during the week.

www.firstdirect.com

This is a fabulous banking service, it's quick and easy and allows me to get on with more important things.

www.bbc.co.uk/news

This is the best place for up-to-the minute news. It's a good place to start and finish the working day.

www.bradfordcityfc.co.uk

As a Northern lad, I have to stay true to my roots. Every now and then I'll check up on my home team online.

www.amazon.co.uk

I love films and books and with such a wide range and regular deals, this is definitely a favourite website of mine.

Paul Hirst is commercial business development director at RSA.

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