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Article
Publication date: 8 February 2011

Rafal Wolski and Magdalena Zaleczna

The purpose of this paper is to identify possible reasons for insurance companies' scant interest in real estate as investment asset in Poland. The authors attempt to…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify possible reasons for insurance companies' scant interest in real estate as investment asset in Poland. The authors attempt to determine the impact of real estate investment on insurance companies' profitability.

Design/methodology/approach

After collecting the aggregated data about insurance companies' financial results for the period 2000‐2008 the authors analyzed the relationship between real estate investment and profitability indicators such as return on assets (ROA), return on equity (ROE) and return on sales (ROS). This approach reflected the shareholders' point‐of‐view. Subsequently, the same kind of analysis was carried out to investigate the impact of real estate investments on the insurance companies' return on technical activity (RTA) and return on investment activity (RIA). These indicators are meant to assess business performance from the point‐of‐view of insured persons.

Findings

The analysis revealed some negative correlations: real estate investments may reduce the profitability of insurance companies. If this is true, the unwillingness of insurance companies to purchase property would not be surprising. Yet, this conclusion should be accepted with caution.

Research limitations/implications

Due to the short study period and changes in legal classification of investment categories, the available data were very imperfect and the study results may not be perceived as undisputable, hence, it is felt that further research is needed.

Originality/value

The paper is original, as previously no such research has been conducted in Poland.

Details

Journal of Property Investment & Finance, vol. 29 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-578X

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