Not unexpectedly, most Major League Baseball rookies have a lower batting average than veteran players, especially early in the season. We understand they’ll weed themselves out, the survivors will improve and the group average will revert to the mean.

But an untrained observer might conclude that the latest trend in baseball is to hit less often. An irresponsible observer would ascribe cause and motivation to the data and might try to lull opposing pitchers into thinking they are easy outs, only to explode with productivity later in the season. And they’d show the early season batting data to support their position. They’d be wrong.

Carriers often ask us about self-administration of voluntary benefits, and the fact that it’s offered by more of the new voluntary carriers now than in past years. They wonder if this is a trend in the business and suggest that, after all, it’s easier on the carrier than traditional voluntary policy administration. But only one-third of employers prefer self-admin. Carrier-administered voluntary dominates the small market, is very common in the mid-market and has begun entering the large case market.

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