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Perhaps more than any time in recent history, a new year has ushered in the promise of change. In the U.S., the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccines, renewed signs of economic recovery and a new political landscape all gave hope that 2021 would begin to feel more like “normal.” 

As we look ahead, however, it is clear that our definition of normal may have undergone a permanent shift. Further, many of the issues that arose in 2020 will not be easily resolved. Herd immunity is unlikely to be achieved until summer, and ongoing lockdowns continue to impact consumer demand and spending patterns. Ongoing civil unrest, economic disparity and stark political differences complicate the path forward. The global economy has begun to recover, but progress will be highly uneven.

Additionally, many sectors, including retail, education, healthcare, hospitality and entertainment may have long‑lasting changes. COVID-19 accelerated technology, e-commerce and “work from anywhere,” and all of these trends will have a profound effect on where and how people choose to work and live. As companies plan to reopen and bring back their workforces, they will also have to grapple with new questions around vaccine mandates, how to safely operate, and what accommodations might be necessary. 

There is ample reason to believe that 2021 will be “different” from 2020. For property and casualty buyers, however, the first half of the year is likely to feel very familiar. Success in today’s insurance market will require an understanding of the current realities and a continued willingness to adapt. Clients have survived the challenges of 2020 and now have an opportunity to chart their own course. Similarly, insurers face their own choices amid a complicated and evolving landscape. For a better understanding of the opportunities and threats evolving in the Property and Casualty landscape, read the Interim Lockton Market Update.