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Stars Fail to Boost Auto Insurance Sales

New York — U.S. auto insurers failed to boost sales even after spending billions of dollars on advertisements with Hollywood actors and professional athletes, McKinsey and Co. said.

The industry has been in a “marketing arms race” during the past decade, boosting spending 15 percent a year to almost $6 billion in 2011, the management-consulting firm said in a report released last week. Sales have been stagnant for the group over 10 years and more than half of the advertising outlay has come from insurers that didn’t gain market share, McKinsey said.