COVID-19

Some auto insurers offer discounts as COVID-19 curtails driving

Jack Stewart Apr 7, 2020
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Driving is down 35% to 50% across the country, meaning fewer crashes, Allstate CEO Tom Wilson says. Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
COVID-19

Some auto insurers offer discounts as COVID-19 curtails driving

Jack Stewart Apr 7, 2020
Driving is down 35% to 50% across the country, meaning fewer crashes, Allstate CEO Tom Wilson says. Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
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People are driving less these days so some car insurance companies are offering discounts to customers.

Mike Altschwager lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and like a lot of people he’s working from home now.

“Amusingly enough, I actually just purchased a new car about three weeks ago,” Altschwager said.

And now that new car is sitting idle in the driveway. But he’s still paying for insurance, and questioning that.

“Nobody knows what next week looks like financially,” Altschwager said.

His insurance company isn’t offering a discount, yet, but a couple of others are. American Family Insurance says its customers will be getting $50 per vehicle. Allstate says it’ll give a 15% credit for two months.

Driving is down 35% to 50% across the country, meaning fewer crashes, Allstate CEO Tom Wilson said.

“If you have fewer accidents, then our costs go down, and we think it’s fair to give our customers payback at this time when they need the money a lot,” Wilson said.

The insurance market is highly competitive, says Cathy Seifert at CFRA research.

“I think it’s a smart move from a customer retention standpoint, from a loyalty standpoint,” Seifert said. She says this could be a savvy investment in goodwill.

COVID-19 Economy FAQs

Which businesses are allowed to reopen right now? And which businesses are actually doing so?

As a patchwork of states start to reopen, businesses that fall into a gray area are wondering when they can reopen. In many places, salons are still shuttered. Bars are mostly closed, too, although restaurants may be allowed to ramp up, depending on the state. “It’s kind of all over the place,” said Elizabeth Milito of the National Federation of Independent Business.

Will you be able to go on vacation this summer?

There’s no chance that this summer will be a normal season for vacations either in the U.S. or internationally. But that doesn’t mean a trip will be impossible. People will just have to be smart about it. That could mean vacations closer to home, especially with gas prices so low. Air travel will be possible this summer, even if it is a very different experience than usual.

When does the expanded COVID-19 unemployment insurance run out?

The CARES Act, passed by Congress and signed by President Donald Trump in March, authorized extra unemployment payments, increasing the amount of money, and broadening who qualifies. The increased unemployment benefits have an expiration date — an extra $600 per week the act authorized ends on July 31.

You can find answers to more questions here.

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