Today, the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) published updated representative portfolios that will be used for calculation of the volatility adjustments (VA) to the relevant risk-free interest rate term structures (RFR) for Solvency II.
EIOPA will start using these data for the calculation of the VA with the reference date of 30 September 2016, which will be published on 10 October 2016.
EIOPA publishes the updated representative portfolios 3 months in advance in order to allow (re)insurers sufficient time to prepare for this change.
The updated portfolios are based on data reported by European (re)insurance companies to their national supervisory authorities during the preparatory phase of Solvency II in the course of 2015. Based on more up-to-date and granular data, the new portfolios enable more accurate reflection of the impact of market volatility under the Solvency II framework.
EIOPA will revise the representative portfolios on a yearly basis with the next update being scheduled for the second half of 2017.
The representative portfolios can be accessed under "Background Material" here.
The volatility adjustments are derived from spreads of representative portfolios of assets. The representative portfolios are derived in accordance with Article 49 of Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2015/35.
The volatility adjustment is a measure to ensure the appropriate treatment of insurance products with long-term guarantees under Solvency II. (Re)insurers are allowed to adjust the RFR to mitigate the effect of short-term volatility of bond spreads on their solvency position. In that way, the volatility adjustment prevents pro-cyclical investment behaviour of (re)insurers.