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UK car insurance premiums in Q1 drop to lowest level since 2015 - survey

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(Reuters) - The cost of a comprehensive car insurance policy in Britain slumped 14% in the first quarter of 2021, to their lowest level since 2015, as different phases of lockdowns in the country kept motorists off the streets, a survey showed.

UK motorists now have to pay 538 pounds ($747.01) on an average for their comprehensive car insurance premiums, according to the latest index from price comparison site Confused.com in association with insurance broker Willis Towers Watson.

"The impact of fewer drivers on the roads has led to fewer claims, which have allowed shoppers to see some of the biggest savings on their car insurance in almost six years," Chief Executive Officer of Confused.com Louise O'Shea said in the survey report.

"The sensitivity of the current economic climate means that these savings couldn't come at a better time."

British motor insurers Admiral Group and Direct Line experienced a boost to their 2020 financials due to fewer claims in the past year.

Premiums during the first three months of 2021 fell by 7% compared with the prior quarter, according to the survey that adopted an updated calculation methodology.

"The scale of the reduction in premiums seen over the last quarter reflects the realities of notably better claims experience under successive COVID-19 lockdowns," Graham Wright, UK Lead of P&C Personal Lines Pricing at Willis Towers Watson said.

Male and female drivers aged 71 or above benefited more from the price drop, compared with other age groups, seeing a 9% quarterly price decrease, taking their annual premiums to 410 pounds and 346 pounds, respectively, the survey showed.

($1 0.7202 pounds)

(Reporting by Indranil Sarkar in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)