Employment in the insurance industry has been affected by the sluggish U.S. and world economies. Starting in 2008, employment in many sectors of the industry dropped annually for several years, until the trend changed in 2012, according the Insurance Information Institute (III) in New York. Although employment is on the rise, it has not yet returned to its 2008 peak. The slow economy impacted the industry in two primary ways. First, it led to a slowdown in the number of people seeking insurance of all types, especially life insurance. And secondly, it led to decreasing returns on investments, which meant that cash reserves were affected. As a response to both of these issues, companies stopped hiring employees, did not replace employees when they left, or laid off numbers of workers.  

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