Soaring gas prices, a severe economic downturn and an 8% increase in auto premiums created a fourfold jump in policy lapses in 2008, according to figures released by Insurance.com. "There's clearly a correlation between the sharp increase in car-insurance rates last year and consumers letting their insurance policies lapse -- and unfortunately, rates went up just as the economy started to suffer," said VP of Strategic Alliances Sam Belden.

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