Fewer Vehicles on 2012 U.S. Roads Than 5 Years Ago
|According to Jim Lang in the May 1 issue of Aftermarket Insight, there were just under 241 million cars and light trucks in the U.S. at the beginning of 2012, fewer light vehicles than on January 1, 2007. From 1997 to 2007, the vehicle population in the U.S. rose one-quarter, up more than 47 million.|
Since 2007, there has been no growth in cars and light trucks on U.S. roads, just a five-year vehicle population plateau with only minor annual variations. This will have many aftermarket consequences for years to come.Click here
to see the full article.
|RepairPal Launches "Top Shop" Auto Repair Network|
In a press release issued May 1, 2012, RepairPal announced a new Top Shop network of trusted repair shops. Only high quality shops qualify for inclusion in the network and are vigorously vetted to find shops with exceptional car care, customer service, repairs, and fair prices. Click here
to see the entire Press Release, and look for the quote issued by ASCCA member Greg Kelly, owner of Greg's Automotive.
|Demandforce Acquired by Intuit|
|Demandforce has agreed to be acquired by Intuit. Here is the statement issued by Jordan MacAvoy, Director of Business Development earlier today:|
We are very excited to announce we have agreed to be acquired by Intuit, one of the greatest software companies in the world. Intuit is a company of 8,000 employees who share our mission of delivering solutions to over 5 million small businesses. We are proud to be backed by such a well-respected company and innovation leader in our space. This transaction will allow us to achieve our goal of reaching every small business while continuing to provide our customers with more innovation, more connection and more success. Demandforce will continue to operate as a distinct business unit, run by the existing management team with all existing employees staying on board. We thank you for your support and dedication thus far, and assure you we will continue to work hard to grow small business for the benefit of us all. To read more about our big news check out our blog or read the press release.
If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me or another Demandforce team member.
Director of Business Development
|Agency Recommends 9% Workers' Comp Hike|
|Courtesy, The Armstrong Report, May 2012|
In a surprise move, California's rating agency has recommended that benchmark workers' compensation rates in the state be increased by 9.1%, starting July 1.
Although the California Department of Insurance is billing the rate hike request as merely a small adjustment based on the rates insurance companies already have on file, the recommendation, if approved, would increase the benchmark rates insurers use to calculate their prices. And in turn, that means your workers' comp premiums will likely rise when your policy comes up for renewal after July 1 or at the start of the year.
The rate filing still has to be vetted by the Insurance Department, which will likely order an increase of lesser magnitude, as per usual, but the recommendation reflects the stark reality that the cost of workers' comp claims in California continues to climb.
Fortunately, the rate increase recommendation by the Workers' Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau has mostly been factored into the majority of insurance companies' pricing as of April 2012.
But the recommendation signifies that rates are continuing upward due to medical cost inflation and other trends that are increasing the cost of claims.
If approved by Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones, the pure premium rate for all of California's 494 classifications would increase to an average of $2.51 per $100 of payroll. That's 4.1% more than the $2.41 average rate insurance carriers already have filed. However, it's also 9.1% above the last benchmark rate that Jones approved for Jan. 1, 2012 - $2.33.
The pure premium rate - or the benchmark rate - is essentially a guidepost for insurance companies to use when pricing their policies. It represents the anticipated cost of claims as well as claims-adjusting expenses. Insurers use the rate, which does not include other figures such as marketing, administrative and other overhead expenses, as a starting point for pricing their policies. It is not mandatory that they use the rate that the insurance commissioner sets.
After making their own rate filings, insurance companies use an employer's loss history (the amount of claims and costs of claims during the last three years compared to the premiums charged) to calculate a final price for the policy. The reasons for the rate hike are many, according to the Rating Bureau. First there has been a marked increase in so-called "cumulative injury claims" - in other words, injuries that are compounded over time as someone is injured multiple times at the same employer or a series of employers.
A recent claims survey by the Rating Bureau found that 76% of employees with cumulative injury claims did not return to work with their employers at the time of their last injury. In addition, 65% of workers who had suffered on-the-job injuries to multiple body parts did not return to their jobs with their last employers, as was the case for 46% of those who had filed claims for injuries that included claims of psychiatric injuries.
But that's not the only factor. The proportion of claims that include payment of indemnity benefits (meaning that the injured worker also was unable to work for a period of time and was compensated through workers' comp insurance for the lost work time) has also increased. There has also been a noticeable increase in the number of claims that are filed late, which tends to skew the data. Additionally, the medical portion of workers' comp claims continues to increase.
The news is not all bad though. While the total cost of the average indemnity claim hit $66,922 in 2011, up 40% from the $46,949 logged in 2005, claims cost inflation has moderated, growing only 2% from 2009.
The reason is that more small, low-dollar claims have been entering the system, which has reduced the average cost of claims.
ASCCA Launches New Membership Drive
At February's ASCCA Team Weekend, the Board of Directors approved our new membership drive campaign for 2012, One Member Can. This campaign is designed as a tool to help us reach our goal of doubling our membership, and to remind each of you that EVERY member truly CAN make a difference in the growth of our Association.
The attached flyers were designed by the membership committee as marketing material to be used to introduce and provide information to Chapter Leadership about the One Member Can program.
The One Member Can informative, 2-page flyer is designed to be printed double-sided on 8 ½" x 11" sheets of paper, while the one page poster is designed to be a tabletop piece, printed on glossy 8" x 10" stock paper - to be place next to the 2-page flyers. There is also a 16" x 20" poster available. If you would like to display a poster of that size, please contact us directly and the template will be forwarded separately.
Please take a moment to read through the marketing material thoroughly. The more you know about our One Member Can campaign - the better you'll be at using it to engage and enlist new members! The material also contains instructions on how to report your new member sign-ups, and how you can win a new iPad.
If you need any additional information or have questions, please don't hesitate to contact Heather Vigil at (800) 810-4272 or email@example.com.
Calendar of Events
ASCCA Summer Educational Conference
June 22-24, 2012
Hilton Irvine, Orange County Airport
Room Rate: $99
Hotel Reservation: Call 800.445.8667 and ask for ASCCA room rate.
Reservation deadline: June 5, 2012
2012 Attendee Brochure
2012 Exhibitor Brochure
September 29-30, 2012
Embassy Suites, Sacramento
Room Rate: $149
Reservation deadline: September 7
December 8-9, 2012
Embassy Suites, Sacramento
Hotel Reservation: COMING SOON
Room Rate: $149
Reservation deadline: November 16