Premium Comparison V81 - Tableau Version

A Tableau version of the latest Premium Comparison Database is now available to all subscribers. It has the same data as Premium Comparison V81 that was sent out a couple of weeks ago.

You will need Tableau Reader 9.1 to open it, which can be downloaded for free here:

ASB Easy Life and Living Insurance

A number of advisers have been asking us if Quality Product Research has a rating for ASB's Easy Life and Living Insurance. They do not, but it is likely that one will be added to the research database soon. In the meantime you are welcome to look at the policy document at this link. A key point to note is the pre-existing conditions exclusion.

If you have any comments or suggestions about rating products with pre-existing conditions exclusions please let us know - there are several on the market right now and the approach will need to be based on good principles in order to work across all the different types. 

Difficulty Comparing Policies Highlighted by

Jenée Tibshraeny, at, has a good piece about "navigating the road blocks preventing you from comparing 'apples with apples' when shopping for life insurance." As we spend a lot of time comparing policy documents we agree. The article is well worth a look. 

Tibshraeny highlights: 

"Of the 20 life insurance providers I’ve looked at, only half have published their policy documents on their websites.

These include AA Life, ANZ, ASB, BNZ, Cigna, Co-op Bank, Countdown, Kiwibank, Pinnacle and Westpac.

Those that haven’t include AIA, AMP, Asteron, Fidelity, MAS, OnePath, Partners Life, SBS, Sovereign and Volo."

Although I have to point out that AIA, AMP, Asteron, Fidelity, OnePath, Partners, and Sovereign do make their documents available publicly online: through sites like LifeDirect, KiwiCover, and others. If you google them, you can get several links to their policy documents. 

Tibshraeny then moves on to highlight the differences in wordings. This is trickier territory. There's a difference between "bad" differences which are merely confusing and make it hard to compare policies and "good" differences which make a policy demonstrably better than the others. There is a difference between documents that have a lot of superfluous words and details for cover that you did not buy, and those that have lots of long words because they cover more medical conditions. 

There have been some interesting developments in the UK to help raise consumer confidence in wordings.

But it all starts with a policy document.

Of course, most consumers do not read the document before they buy, but it is hard to argue that they should not have the opportunity to do so. 


ASB Clever Kash

This is a lovely concept for handling the pocket money account issue for younger children. We've run 'virtual' accounts for our children's pocket money for years, and the older two now have their own bank accounts and are comfortable with the fact that they use notes and coins for only a minority of transactions, but this could have been fun when they were younger. Do check out the video. Link