What is an Actuary and What do They do for Insurance Companies?

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An actuary is a business professional who analyzes the financial consequences of risk. Actuaries use mathematics, statistics, and financial theory to study uncertain future events, especially those of concern to insurance and pension programs. They then use their knowledge to design and manage programs that control the cost of that uncertainty. Their work is essential to the insurance industry and helps keep premiums affordable for policyholders.
As an insurance company, one of the most important pieces of your business is finding ways to minimize risk and manage costs. This is where an actuary comes in. An actuary is a business professional who uses data analysis to assess risk and help companies make informed decisions about how to manage that risk. In other words, actuaries help insurance companies stay afloat by keeping premiums affordable and managing the financial consequences of risk.

How Do Actuaries Help Insurance Companies?

Actuaries use their skills in mathematics, statistics, and financial theory to study uncertain future events. This includes everything from natural disasters to stock market crashes. By understanding how likely these events are to occur and how much they would cost if they did occur, actuaries are able to help insurance companies set rates that will cover claims while still turning a profit. In addition, actuaries help insurance companies develop policies that will minimize payouts in the event of a covered loss.
For example, let's say an actuary is studying the possibility of a hurricane hitting Florida. They would begin by looking at data from past hurricanes to see how often they occur and how much damage they tend to cause. They would also look at data on Florida's economy, population density, and building construction standards to determine how much damage a hurricane would likely cause if it did hit the state. Armed with this information, the actuary could then help the insurance company set rates that would cover payouts in the event of a hurricane while still allowing the company to turn a profit.
In addition to helping insurance companies set rates and develop policies, actuaries also help them manage their investment portfolios. Because actuaries have a deep understanding of financial markets and risk management, they are uniquely positioned to help insurance companies make wise investments that will grow their assets while minimizing risk.


Actuaries play a vital role in the insurance industry by helping companies manage risk and keep premiums affordable. If you're looking for ways to minimize your company's exposure to risk, consider hiring an actuary today.