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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5138

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The deniers here already have their tinfoil hats.


Those hats go well with the tin ears and tin soldiers!
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2611

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

DanWeiss wrote:
Yes, insurance companies do drop lines, but not happily, nor do they do it without a view that the ability to collect premiums will no longer support the quantified risk. Like I said, one of the only ways to change demographics quickly is through legislation. We agree.

Thank you for a courteous response. However, there is a great deal more to the growth of insurance markets than demographics. The insurance industry is no less creative in convincing people that they must have something than other industries. They are constantly looking for ways to create new markets. The specter of global warming is just a recent example. Which is better for the insurance business? Convincing clients that destruction is about to rain on their heads, so they need additional insurance protection (and we just happen to have a product that will take care of that, including consultants who can advise you).........or telling them that not much seems to have altered over the past 10 - 15 years so sit tight?

Create a need, or a perceived need, and step in to fill that need. Basic marketing.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5138

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow. Welcome to the mind of the true paranoid. Mrgybe seems to have an even more jaundiced view of the dishonesty of the unregulated business world than mine, with this comment:

Quote:
The insurance industry is no less creative in convincing people that they must have something than other industries. They are constantly looking for ways to create new markets. The specter of global warming is just a recent example. Which is better for the insurance business?


This is an even stranger rationalization than his claim that a researcher must have reported what he wanted the conclusion to be. So we can ignore the evidence of increased storm damages and the insurance industry beginning to modify their actuarial models as just marketing? Wow. I guess you can rationalize away the entire real world.
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keycocker



Joined: 10 Jul 2005
Posts: 3334

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually basic marketing says recognize a need or perceived need and meet that need. The part where you create a perceived need is called market manipulation.
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2611

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So Apple have been manipulating the market for years then? Or were they responding to the masses demanding iPhones and iPads.........or the latest iteration thereof? How about women's cosmetics? Or square pizzas? Or stainless steel appliances? Or a new car every three years? Or Cosmo? Or snake oil? Of course entrepreneurs create demand for things we don't need. Always have. There is absolutely nothing dishonest about that unless they are lying about what their product will do. We don't have to buy their offerings.

And, for those who clearly know little about the insurance business, it is one of the most regulated industries in the country.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14050

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 2:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mrgybe wrote:
The insurance industry is no less creative in convincing people that they must have something ...

10 or 15 pages into an automobile forum thread discussing the best prices for extended warranties, I reminded the group that EWs are simply insurance policies, priced just like casino gambling and flood insurance in the sense that the house always wins in the long term or they would go out of business. I had to do some more clicking to figure out why I got such a faceful of crap for mentioning the elephant in the room: an EW salesman had begun the thread with an opening gambit troll and was reeling in paying suckers right and left. The more proof, references, and logic I offered these saps, the louder he got and the more saps he fooled. These people actually believed EW insurers deliberately lost money to save same for their customers, or save the whales*, or the planet, or some such altruistic nonsense. I left them with the usual admonition to do their own homework 'cause I ain't their nanny. I glanced back at the thread weeks later to find that people were still signing up with this peddler. They'd rather write checks for a thousand dollars than spend five minutes Googling EWs or personal finance.

*A common bumper sticker I saw when I worked near the agency which managed all USAF and USN nuclear warheads was "Nuke a gay whale for Jesus". Push enough ideological buttons on either side and the zombies will drink the koolaide.
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keycocker



Joined: 10 Jul 2005
Posts: 3334

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I find it remarkable that you listed a range of companies like cosmetics that are absolutely manipulating the market to sell goods at a 100 times cost even if they are inferior.
In fact Apple has recognized the market for small portable touch screen devices and made the most appealing ones. Others sold them before but they were inferior. Apple sold good ones and prevailed.
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2611

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You don't understand what market manipulation is. Persuading customers to buy a product at a price that far exceeds it's value is not market manipulation. That's just poor consumer judgment. It is their choice to buy at that price. Cornering the market in a stock or commodity in a deliberate attempt to interfere with normal market activity in that stock or commodity, is market manipulation. Conspiring with others to raise prices is market manipulation. Such actions are frequently illegal.
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techno900



Joined: 28 Mar 2001
Posts: 1452

PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2012 10:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

People are duped all the time in just about every possible market/product. If not lied too, at least very cleaver marketing is used to sell their product.

Regulations are needed to stop or limit the lies and misleading hype, but beyond that, it is incumbent upon the consumer to do their homework before buying any product. Stupid is, stupid does.

Extended warranties are huge profit centers for the sellers. There are a few were it MAY be a good investment, but very, very, few. Cars aren't one of them.

Since I just renewed my homeowners insurance (changed companies to find a lower rate), it's interesting to note the changes over the years. Everyone should read their policy to see what is NOT COVERED. The list is extensive and growing.

It's also smart to check on your windsurfing gear coverage, if any. Your homeowners policy should provide some coverage, or not. It won't be covered by your car, van or trailer insurance.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5138

PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2012 11:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Back on topic, with a note from a sailing site:\
Quote:
If you've always had a dream of sailing the Northwest Passage, by 2016, if a leading expert is correct, you'll be able to do it easily (but not good news for polar bears). One of the world’s leading experts has predicted the Arctic sea ice will totally collapse in the summer months as early as 2016, comparable to adding 20 years of carbon emissions.

Professor Peter Wadhams of Cambridge University first predicted the demise of Arctic ice back in 2007, when it hit its previously smallest extent.

Professor Wadhams has spent the summer on the Arctic ice, using lasers and robot submarines to get a picture of just how much is left. He's also involved in a BBC2 documentary series to be broadcast in the UK next month called 'Operation Iceberg', which features a giant ice berg twice the size of Manhattan, where Wadhams crossed paths with a curious polar bear and saw for himself the dramatic decline in sea ice.

'30 years ago there was typically about eight million square kilometres of ice left in the Arctic in the summer, and by 2007, five years ago, that had halved, it had gone down to four million,' he explains. 'And this year it's gone down below that, and it's really heading for oblivion.


Portrait of Peter Wadhams (UK) Professor of Oceam Physics at Cambridge University. - .. ©

'The volume of ice at the pole naturally goes up in the winter and down in the summer, but its been declining over the last 30 years. It's now at the lowest level since records began.'

This year it is another half a million square kilometres smaller, and Wadhams says this is proof we must intensify our efforts to prevent global warming or risk a 'global disaster' in the northern latitudes.

'The summer area of ice has already gone down from eight to four million square kilometres, and as it collapses, we'll lose another four million. Now four million is about one per cent of the surface area of the earth.'

Analysis shows the ice has lost 40% of its thickness since 1980, and Wadhams warns a collapse of the Arctic ice sheet would release vast quantities of methane from the submarine permafrost, driving global warming even faster.

More at http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00tvcnx
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