New York State
Insurance Department


ISSUED 4/19/2005

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

NEW YORK CENTRAL MUTUAL REDUCING AUTO RATES BY 5 PERCENT

        Acting Superintendent of Insurance Howard Mills today announced that the New York State Insurance Department has approved a New York Central Mutual rate filing that will reduce the auto premiums paid by their policyholders by a statewide average of 5.1 percent. The savings for New York Central customers are estimated at $15 million for 2005.

        "The Insurance Department has now approved eight auto rate reductions for 2005 and there are other insurers indicating they may also cut their prices in order to stay competitive," Acting Superintendent Mills stated. "Governor Pataki has a proven track record in combating fraud and streamlining the regulations that govern the no-fault auto insurance system. The Governor’s policy successes are now saving New Yorkers hundreds of millions of dollars in premium payments."

        New York Central Mutual has over 225,000 policyholders statewide and is one of the largest state-domiciled regional writers. The new rate structure goes into effect on May 1, 2005 for new business and June 1, 2005 for renewals.

        New York Central Mutual, which is headquartered in Edmeston, NY, is the eighth insurer to reduce their auto rates in 2005 in response to Insurance Department requests that they do so. The others are Amica Mutual, GEICO, MetLife, Nationwide, Progressive, State Farm and Travelers. The combined cumulative savings from all of these rate reductions are more than $265 million.

        These savings for New York drivers began after November 2004, when the Insurance Department asked the state’s largest auto insurance carriers to meet with the agency’s senior management team to discuss possible rate reductions in light of compelling industry data indicating that losses had dropped substantially between 2002 and the third quarter of 2004. Meetings with other carriers are continuing.


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