Leading premium writing countries globally 2018, by premiums

The United States was the largest insurance premium writing country globally in 2018, both in terms of life and non-life insurance. Life insurance premiums written in the U.S. were valued at 593 billion U.S. dollars. Non-life insurance premiums written in the U.S. amounted to 876 billion U.S. dollars in that year, while Chinese non-life insurance premiums only reached 262 billion U.S. dollars. Japan and the People’s Republic of China followed the U.S. in terms of life insurance premiums with 334 and 313 billion U.S. dollars respectively.

Berkshire Hathaway is the largest global insurer

Berkshire Hathaway, which is owned by Warren Buffett and headquartered in the US state of Nebraska, was the largest insurer worldwide in terms of revenue in 2018. However, the next largest insurer was Ping An Insurance, which is based in the rapidly growing Chinese city of Shenzhen.

Berkshire Hathaway vs Ping An Insurance

The revenues of both insurers have been steadily growing over the past decade. However, the growth of Ping An Insurance has been more rapid for Ping An than for Berkshire Hathaway, which may indicate that the former will some day catch up with the latter.

Leading life and non-life direct premium writing countries globally in 2018, by premiums

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Release date

August 2019



Survey time period


Special properties

Before reinsurance transactions.

Supplementary notes

*Includes accident and health insurance.
United States: Nonlife premiums include state funds; life premiums include an estimate of group pension business; Life premiums are estimated.
Japan: Estimated; April 1, 2018 to March 31, 2019.
United Kingdom: Estimated.
P.R. China: Provisional
France: provisional
Germany: Nonlife premiums are provisional.
Italy: estimated.
South Korea: April 1, 2018 to March 31, 2019.
Canada: Estimated; Life premiums are net premiums.

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