4:55pm Friday 14th December 2012
© Press Association 2013
The best price a woman can typically get for her car insurance has jumped by £114 or 15% since the start of November, as insurers prepare to comply with new European "gender neutral" rules from next week, a price comparison website said.
The cheapest quote being offered to women is £862 on average - but just six weeks ago the best price was around £748 - Gocompare.com said.
It made the findings from analysing searches for car insurance quotes made for women of all ages on the website, including comprehensive cover and third party policies.
The site, which has monitored more than 10 million car insurance quotes since January 2011, said this is the biggest shift it has seen in premiums so far.
It said the typical best price for women aged 17 and 18 has reached £2,191, representing a £281 hike from the start of November.
The new gender neutral rules stem from a European Court of Justice ruling last year which means that insurers will no longer be able to consider a customer's gender when calculating how much they should pay for their car or life insurance or what their retirement income should be.
Women have traditionally benefited from lower car insurance premiums due to their lower accident rates. Men have tended to receive higher annuity rates due to their lower average life expectancy, while life insurance has been cheaper for women.
The full impact of the new rules which come into force next Friday is yet to be seen, although the choice of premiums available to younger drivers is already showing signs of shrinking back.
Gocompare found that 17-year-olds looking for insurance today would get an average of 32 quotes, which is three quotes fewer than they would have typically had at the start of November.
The changes could lead to many younger drivers being forced off the road. Insurer Aviva recently found that a third of parents who help with their children's car insurance believe higher premiums when the new rules come in will force them to give up these payments. The choice of policies for younger drivers is likely to contract further as insurers temporarily step out of the market for this sector until prices settle down, Gocompare said.
© Copyright 2001-2013 Newsquest Media Group