Last month we mentioned that the new interpretation of the Gender Directive of 2004 forces the insurers to abandon their current rules on calculating insurance premiums on the basis of gender. (Is living longer still worth it?) While women could and should be worried that their life insurance premiums are likely to rise, the change is likely to reach further. At this point women car insurance policies are often set lower than men policies. Why? Statistics show that male drivers under the age of 22 are ten times more likely to have a serious crash than female drivers of the same age. (Google car insurance comparison service threatens moneysupermarket and confused.com) Since the car insurance companies will not be able to take gender into account anymore in calculating the premiums and will have to balance the amounts, it is likely that the car insurance premiums for women will rise, as well.
Interestingly, Google decided to launch a price comparison service for car insurance in the UK, which entices internet users with promises of transparency (e.g., it doesn't take into account extras such as courtesy car by default, which is said to reduce the risk of a consumer buying a policy that doesn't match his needs) and privacy (e.g., ca 120 insurers won't be selling the data acquired from visitors to Google's comparison website to third parties). Google promises to monitor the truthfulness of the data provided by the insurer on its website as well as to introduce a code of conduct that all the insurers would have to abide by. While Google is not an amateur in this area, this service follows already existing services for price comparison of credit cards and bank accounts, its neutrality as a price comparison website can be questioned. After all, it puts itself now at the top of the google search results when you enter 'car insurance' into Google UK. The not long ago reported need for a regulatory oversight of price comparison websites remains valid. (Spoiled for choice or well-informed?)