The value of individual insurance policies signed by 43 Japanese life insurers came to 1.26 quadrillion yen as of March 31, down 4.3 percent from a year earlier, the Life Insurance Association of Japan said Friday.

It was the fifth straight year the association’s member insurers have experienced a decline in total value, reflecting falls in new contracts, rises in cancellations and lapses of policies, the association said.

The amount of new insurance policies signed by the insurers in the year that ended March 31 came to 128.1 trillion yen, down 4.1 percent, marking the fifth consecutive year of decline.

But the number of new policy contracts rose 13.5 percent, up for the first time in three years, reflecting robust demand for policies covering cancer and medical care.

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