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According to the Insurance Information Institute, U.S. insurance companies in the aggregate hold about $8.5 trillion of cash and invested assets. These assets support insurers’ ability to pay claims to policyholders. In recent years, government bodies have attempted to influence these investments using the levers of insurance regulation—from state “name and shame” laws on investments in coal, to restrictions on investments in Iran, to calls from the Trump Administration to ease infrastructure investments. Understanding the background and interplay of the insurance laws that govern investments by carriers can provide some context to these developments and also shed light on a key aspect of solvency regulation of this critical U.S. industry.

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