Diane Levick. The Hartford (Conn.) Courant. 2008/11/06. Page N/A. A new report from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) shows that in recent years the cost of auto insurance across the U.S., including Connecticut, where drivers pay the nation’s 11th highest auto insurance premiums, has declined slightly. Experts say that the trend has begun to reverse, although increases have been relatively moderate. Data released by the NAIC on November 5 show that the average premium per vehicle for a policy that includes liability, collision and comprehensive coverage was $1,080 in Connecticut in 2006, compared with $1,097 in 2005. The national average premium in 2006 was $937, with drivers in Washington D.C. paying $1,316, the highest rates, while premiums averaged $644 in Iowa, where rates were lowest. Robert Hartwig, president of the Insurance Information Institute, said that auto insurance costs in 2007 were basically flat, but despite declining accident frequency in 2008, insurers have seen the average cost of claims rise due to increases in medical costs and the price of materials such as steel, aluminum and plastic needed for auto repair parts. “What we saw as we moved through 2008 was some signs of increasing prices for auto insurance, though not dramatically so,” Hartwig said. Hartwig cited federal statistics indicating that auto insurance prices in September were 3.1 percent higher than a year earlier.

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