Cost of crime rising
The average cost of a crime related business insurance claim during the first three months of 2006 was £4,179 – an increase of 6% on the last quarter of 2005 when the corresponding figure was £3,942, according to the AXA Business Crime Index.
However, between January and March 2006, the total number of crime related business insurance claims fell by 24% when compared to the last three months of 2005, and the total value of these claims fell by 23%.
One of the key reasons for this decline is that during the Christmas period, crime against businesses can increase dramatically because many premises are closed for the festive season.
However, more encouragingly, when compared to the first three months of 2005, the total number of crime related business insurance claims between January and March 2006 fell by 6%.
Commenting on the results, Neil Mercer, property insurance manager at AXA said: “Although our figures show a decline in the number and total cost of business crime, this is still a serious problem that is costing small and medium sized businesses well over £700 million a year.”