Comprehensive motor insurance policies purchased in the direct market are at the most expensive they have been in the past two years, according to Experian.

Research conducted in the process of establishing the information analyst's Motor Insurance Benchmark, revealed that the average direct market quote for comprehensive motor insurance rose by 7.9 per cent in May 2007 compared with the same period last year.

The study also showed that while intermediary market policies are at the highest in the last 11 months, year on year they have dropped 3.7 per cent, making them cheaper than their direct equivalents.

An average May 2007 premium from a direct insurer cost £560 compared to £529 for cover in the intermediary market, which now quotes premiums on average 5.5 per cent lower.

Meanwhile, third party, fire and theft premiums are higher in both markets than comprehensive because they are mainly taken out by younger drivers with low excesses.

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