CAR INSURANCE NEWS ROUNDUP: WEEK ENDED 23 JAN 2013:
The fears of heightened car insurance rates for young female drivers in the wake of the EU gender ruling after new research revealing a 50 per cent rate jump.
Thanks to the new EU Gender Directive, which went into effect 21 December 2012 and bans car insurance companies from using gender-based risk assessment techniques in an effort to stamp out discrimination, teenage females getting behind the wheel for the first time in their lives have seen massive rate hikes as a result. In fact, one car insurance comparison site’s research has found that, for young women between the ages of 17 and 18, rates have gone up to £1,965 on average, a 50 per cent jump from the typical policy price of £1,307 prior to the gender ruling.
Men have been on the winning side of this equation, despite the fact that originally insurers were charging females – especially younger ones – much less than their male counterparts because of the statistical likelihood for young men to get themselves into car accidents at a much higher rate than women. Now, young teenage men aged 17 and 18 are only charged £2,191 for an average policy – which is still ridiculously high – but is actually around 5 per cent less than they were prior to the ruling.
The next age bracket up, men between the ages of 19 and 21, have seen even better results with their premiums falling to an average of £1,382, a decrease of around 12 per cent. Men 72 years and older also experienced the same decrease, according to the comparison site’s figures, and the overall net gains and losses for drivers of all ages and genders have been an eight per cent rate hike for women and a six per cent rate drop for men in the month following the 21 December deadline.
The gender gap that existed between male and female motorists has indeed been moved closer to equity, researchers say, as the 14 per cent more men used to pay for their cover in comparison to their female counterparts has since shrunk to a mere two per cent. However, critics of the new regulations accuse the EU Gender Directive of throwing the baby out with the bathwater by ignoring the fact that statistical analysis has proven for decades that young male drivers are absolutely rubbish behind the wheel on average and should be charged more since they’ll be the one getting into major cock-ups on the nation’s roadways.