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I’m trying to get a handle on how to determine an insurer’s float from their balance sheet. I’ve come across explanations of BH’s float determination from the balance sheet. I’m wondering how to get these numbers for another insurer using Aflac as an example. Aflac’s consolidated balance sheet is actually fairly simple (numbers in millions of USD):


Total investments & cash $103,462
Receivables $680
Accrued investment income $802
Deferred policy acquisition cost $10,654
PP&E $617
Other $887
Total assets $117,102


Policy liabilities:
Future Policy benefits $79,278
Unpaid policy claims $3,981
Unearned premiums $1,704
Other policyholders funds $9,630
Total policy liabilities $94,593
Notes Payable $3,285
Income taxes $2,613
Payables for return of cash collateral $838
Other $2,267
Total Liabilities $103,596

Total shareholder’s equity $13,506

As I understand insurance float, it’s essentially policyholders’ net future benefits and claims, less any of those claims not yet collected in cash. Off this balance sheet, that lines up as follows:

Total policy liabilities (future policy benefits,
Unpaid claims, unearned premiums,
Other policyholders’ funds) $94,593
Receivables $680
Deferred policy acquisition costs $10,654

For a total of $83,259 of insurance float. That’s a very large number. I was surprised that Aflac’s float would exceed Berkshire-Hathaway’s. It’s much bigger than I expected given their current market cap of $22B.

Am I calculating this correctly?

Thanks for any help,

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