Gentlemen,—I beg leave to thank you for the honour you have done me in again requesting me to act as your Honorary President. This was an honour which I accepted with much pleasure; for I am always glad to meet the younger men of my profession, to discuss with them points of principle or practice, and, as far as practicable, to assist them in their endeavours to obtain a better knowledge of the theory of our subject, or (it may be) to extend its boundaries by original investigations.
After much consideration as to the subject on which I should address you to-night, I decided not to take up some intricate or new point of theory, but rather to put together a few practical remarks suggested by my business experience. I do not take this course because I consider the theory of our subject is thoroughly workt out. On the contrary, I am of opinion that there are many important questions which still remain to be elucidated,—subjects which will well repay careful study, and which will reflect credit upon those who investigate them exhaustively.
One such subject is the very practical one of the proper allowance to be made for the surrender of a policy upon an under-average life. According to general practice, every such policy that has been in force for not less than (say) three years, is considered as entitled to a surrender value.