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Friday, May 26, 2000

Insurance costs
fall for Hawaii
auto owners

From staff and wire reports


Auto insurance costs in Hawaii fell 12.5 percent from 1997 to 1998, according to a new report.

It was the largest decrease in the nation, causing Hawaii to drop from fourth to 11th place among the 50 states, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners said.

From 1993 to 1998, the overall decrease amounted to more than 17 percent.

"And we expect this trend to continue because of substantial rate reductions made in 1999 and 2000," Gov. Ben Cayetano said.

"This is more good news for Hawaii consumers," state Insurance Commissioner Wayne Metcalf said. "The recent drops in insurance costs reflect the hard work done by this administration and the Legislature in 1997 and 1998 in providing true auto insurance reform legislation to Hawaii's citizens," Metcalf said.

State actuary Martin Simons said he expects Hawaii's insurance-cost ranking will move even lower when the next NAIC report comes out next year. Substantial rate decreases authorized by the state insurance division last year and this year have not yet shown up in the NAIC surveys, he said.

Two years ago Hawaii had the highest auto insurance rates in the country, according to the NAIC.

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