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The Actuary The magazine of the Institute & Faculty of Actuaries

LMSG finds route to market

From Edward Lloyd’s Coffee House in the 17th century to the modern day electronic age, the London Market has relied heavily on verbal interaction and face-to-face contact. Historically this has been mainly underwriter and broker-led. Those that have visited Lloyd’s of London in Lime Street will have observed brokers passing ‘slips’ documenting the insurance terms of agreement to underwriters who negotiate at their boxes.

The actuary’s role typically been to perform the analysis in the background. However, with an increased emphasis on risk management in light of the financial crisis and preparations for Solvency II, there is now huge demand for actuaries who understand the risks facing a business and are able to effectively communicate and discuss them. For example, some insurance and reinsurance company boards are being restructured to give greater power and responsibility to chief risk officers.

This trend of bringing risk management to the forefront presents a fantastic opportunity for actuaries to assist in decision-making and develop innovative new solutions to mitigate risks. The financial world is changing and the London Market Students’ Group (LMSG) is attempting to provide actuarial students with the experiences and opportunities to ensure they are well equipped to succeed in the future.

LMSG typically organises events for senior figures in the general insurance industry to present directly to the next generation of actuaries. We have held presentations in the past delivered by employees from Lloyd’s syndicates and London Market companies, insurance companies, consultancies and regulators, while also holding purely social events. Events normally take the form of a guest speaker followed by the opportunity to socialise and network with actuarial students (and newly-qualified actuaries) working in general insurance. The location is usually a bar in the City where complimentary drinks are commonly provided by the firm of the speaker.

Over the last couple of years, Emma Blackhurst has done a fantastic job as chair of LMSG. Numerous events have been held during her tenure with large attendances and a continually growing mailing list. With the help of the Committee (details below) we will be attempting to strengthen and improve the LMSG further. Our plans for 2010 include events where actuarial students have the opportunity to make short presentations on a topic of their choice, social events and tours around the Lloyd’s of London building. We also plan to organise many more events with presentations from senior figures in the insurance market.

All events that we hold are dependent on funding and the participation of volunteer speakers. The LMSG is extremely grateful for the support we have received from a wide range of firms and organisations and hope this support will continue.

We encourage you to put forward your views on future events we could run, how we can encourage more actuarial students to attend and how we can establish links with other participants in the London Market including underwriters and brokers. If you would like to learn more, be added to the mailing list or are interested in speaking at or funding an LMSG event, please contact me at michael.g.folkson@uk.pwc.com.


Michael Folkson is the chair of the London Market Students’ Group and an associate consultant for PwC LMSG


Michael Folkson (PwC), chair; Nick Betteridge (Lane Clark & Peacock), Karen Jit Dayal (Zurich), Jinita Dhanani (Lane Clark & Peacock), Kate Strevens (Barnett Waddingham) and Greg Taylor (EMB).