As someone who always tends to leave purchasing car insurance to the last minute and thus never quite has enough time to shop around I found this was a very useful and potentially money-saving talk!
John showed some of the maths and statistics behind car insurance premiums explaining that the total insurance premiums offered by a company have to cover the sum of all claims, total expenses and total profit. As each of these has many variables, involves forecasting and there are constraints such as the customer wanting an individual premium and the insurer wanting their quote to be competitive, this leads to the formation of a very large multivariate probability model which needs to be solved.
John demonstrated how quotes are dependent on the date a policy starts (they are likely to be more if the start date is some weeks in the future), your occupation (we saw that premiums are much higher if you are a TV presenter) and how factors such as convictions and adding an extra driver can actually reduce your premium in some cases.
Having heard the talk my conclusion is that the cheapest car insurance quotes go to accountants aged 40-50 with no children or pets and who add a partner of similar age as another named driver. It can also be beneficial to have a minor conviction for speeding!
Whilst I can't do anything now about my occupation or children, I can at least shop around more using brokers, comparison web sites and by going direct to companies that do not use these methods. I just hope that this year I leave myself enough time to do this!