Andrew Tobias

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The life insurance industry is filled with good people who believe in their work and their companies, but who may never have challenged the assumptions underlying their efforts.

Andrew Tobias (born 20 April 1947) is an American journalist, author, and columnist. His main body of work is on investment, but he has also written on politics, insurance, and other topics.

Sourced[edit]

The Invisible Bankers, Everything The Insurance Industry Never Wanted You To Know (1982)[edit]

  • What kind of bank gives back 65 percent-often less-of what you deposit? Indeed, when you compare the services of a bank and an insurance company, common sense suggests something is out of whack.
    • Chapter 1, The Biggest Game In The World, p. 15
  • There are only two things as complicated as insurance accounting and I have no idea what they are.
    • Chapter 2, By Popular Demand: A very Short Chapter On Insurance Accounting, p. 26
  • Life insurance in America has traditionally been dominated by mutual insurers. Twelve of the fifteen largest life insurers are mutuals.
    • Chapter 3, You Can't Tell the Players, p. 39
  • Not surprisingly, the insurance lobby recoils in horror at the prospect of automatic coverage ( including, when it was first proposed, Social Security), no matter how efficient it may be. Automatic coverage eliminates sales commissions and profit.
    • Chapter 4, Tell Us The Odds, p. 63-64
  • The life insurance industry is filled with good people who believe in their work and their companies, but who may never have challenged the assumptions underlying their efforts.
    • Chapter 4, Tell Us The Odds, p. 65
  • The life insurance policies advertised on the radio with the line "You cannot be turned down for this coverage!" are actually saying, " For policies this small, it would cost us more to decide whom to turn down than simply to accept everybody-and make them pay through the nose."
    • Chapter 4, Tell Us The Odds, p. 70
The first American insurance company was the Friendly Society for the Mutual Insurance of Houses Against Fire, founded in Charles Town in South Carolina, in 1735.
  • The first American insurance company was the Friendly Society for the Mutual Insurance of Houses Against Fire, founded in Charles Town in South Carolina, in 1735.
    • Chapter 5, Not Invented Here, p. 87
  • The first known life insurance contract was written in 1536 on the life of a British merchant, William Gybbons, for a term of one year. Gybbons died shortly before the policy was to expire, but the insurers refused the claim. They held that that Gybbons had indeed survived "twelve months" - twelve lunar months (of 28 days). The insurers were taken to court and ordered to pay.
    • Chapter 7, The Battle II, p. 112
  • The larger the deductible you choose, the less insurance you are buying. Insurers want to sell insurance.
    • Chapter 9, Too Much Insurance, p. 155
  • No wonder lawyers, who control the legal system, have fought so hard, and with great success, against "no fault" insurance. No fault, no lawsuits. No lawsuits, no lunch.
    • Chapter 10 , Too Many Lawyers, p. 172
  • Having no national system of catastrophic health insurance, we have, through the courts, managed to patch together pieces of a not very satisfactory one.
    • Chapter 10 , Too Many Lawyers, p. 174
  • There's no question young drivers have far more accidents than older ones-but is it our aim to keep them off the roads? Or to allow only rich young people (who can afford the premiums) to drive?
    • Chapter 11, Too Many Underwriters, Too Many Agents, p. 196
  • Man's natural life span, 75 to 90 years or so, has not increased. It is the number of us who manage to attain it that has increased.
    • Chapter 12, They Bet Your Life, p. 209
  • "Hay fever suffers tend to be above average in intelligence,..."
    • Chapter 12, They Bet Your Life, p. 225
  • Life insurance is a commodity.
    • Chapter 13, Gerber Life: Like Taking Candy From A Baby, p. 235
The industry cannot long offer unneeded or overpriced insurance if people will not buy it.
  • In short: Readily available low-cost life insurance would be a threat to the industry, and whatever threatens the life insurance industry threatens America.
    • Chapter 13, Gerber Life: Like Taking Candy From A Baby, p. 239
  • The first life insurance societies where formed in England in the years between 1692 and 1720. In America, life insurance became available to the clergy through the Presbyterian Ministers Fund, founded in 1759(still in existence), and the Episcopal Corporation, founded ten years later (subsequently merged).
    • Chapter 14, Too Many Salesman, p. 250
  • The industry cannot long offer unneeded or overpriced insurance if people will not buy it.
    • Chapter 15, How God Would Restructure the Insurance Industry, p. 272
  • Rule of thumb: The more trimmings an insurance plan has and the harder someone is pitching it, the faster you should run.
    • Chapter 16, How To Buy Insurance, p. 296

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