PCI is the shorthand for the big annual convention of the Property-Casualty Insurers Association of America. I’ve always thought of it as the U.S. version of the Monte Carlo Rendez-Vous, a big meeting for the U.S. industry’s powerhouses to get together.
I only went to one of these meetings, and it was when the meeting was hosted by PCI’s forerunner, the National Association of Independent Insurers, so things may have changed a bit. There were a lot of high-powered events – I think Colin Powell spoke – but the gathering was mainly so all the players could talk shop dawn to dusk.
In some way, the official events seemed irrelevant. I distinctly remember having nothing to do and thinking the last thing I wanted to do was attend one of those high-powered events. It was an admission of your insignificance, that you were so tiny that you couldn’t command a meeting – kind of like going to a dinner party and only talking with your spouse.
So I don’t know how much credence to put in the theme of this year’s conference, Politics and Private Markets: The Uncertain Path to Prosperity, or in the remarks of David Sampson, CEO of PCI.
Sampson told PCI Reporter “there is so much political engagement in the marketplace right now, and so many policy uncertainties have been generated and inserted into the market, that basically everyone is staying on the sidelines.”
And I’ve heard that, too. I have trouble believing it. But it’s the theme of the conference, so I choose to extend my remarks: Continue reading