January 2021 confirms the recovery momentum in the life insurance sector

Net life insurance inflows were positive in January 2021, at +€2 billion. Unit-linked net inflows amounted to +€2.7 billion. Life insurance is picking up again, with net inflows in January 2021 almost four times higher than in December 2020, in line with the trend observed over the past few months.

Renewed interest in France’s favourite investment

Net inflows in January 2021 were positive at +€2 billion, amplifying the momentum observed at the end of 2020. Indeed, it was positive by +550 million in December 2020, almost nil in October and November 2020 and negative since March 2020. In January 2020, net inflows amounted to +€0.6 billion.

In addition, contributions for January 2021 are up 13% year-on-year, amounting to €13.6 billion (vs €12.1 billion in January 2020).

The amount of benefits paid out in January 2021 (€11.6 billion) was almost stable (+1%) year-on-year (vs €11.5 billion in January 2020).

At the end of January 2021, outstanding life insurance contracts amounted to 1,786 billion.

The French are ready to diversify their savings to improve their expected returns

Unit-linked net inflows in January were positive at +€2.7 billion. They have thus now returned to the level they were at before the start of the health crisis.

The share of unit-linked products in life insurance contributions in January 2021 (33%) confirms the euro-unit-linked mix observed overall in 2020 (34% in unit-linked funds).

These market figures are also good news for our country’s economy, since unit-linked funds make a significant contribution to the financing of companies.

Growth momentum for Retirement Savings Schemes and ‘Relance’ labelled funds

At the end of January 2021, just 16 months after their launch, the retirement savings schemes had 1.24 million policyholders for a total of €13.4 billion in assets under management, half of which were unit-linked products.

The momentum observed in recent months continued into January 2021, with 88,440 new policyholders and €416 million in contributions (+185% and +143% respectively compared with January 2020) to which 147,220 policyholders and €2.4 billion in transfers from old schemes were added. 

Life insurers’ investments in funds with the ‘Relance’ [Recovery] label reached €3.5 billion, including €2.5 billion in unit-linked products at the end of 2020. Nearly all life insurers (representing 92% of the market) market unit-linked products with the ‘Relance’ label.


For Franck Le Vallois, Managing Director of the Fédération Française de l’Assurance: This recovery momentum, which is particularly strong in terms of unit-linked net inflows and in the retirement savings scheme market, is good news for our country’s economic recovery. Indeed, life insurance makes a massive contribution to the financing of companies.”