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By most accounts, the Texas Workers' Compensation Insurance Fund -- the Legislature's answer to deregulating the insurance industry -- is proving to be a stabilizing force in a market that recently teetered on the brink of financial ruin.
Only five months old, the fund's mission is to compete with commercial carriers in an attempt to alleviate skyrocketing premiums. It also is designed to shore up a workers' compensation system that threatened to collapse last year under the strain of losses accumulated under the old system, before the Texas Workers Compensation Reform Act took effect in January 1991.
But the new law's impact on the troubled system was not immediately apparent during its first year. Insurance officials …