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Insurers’ 2011 disaster hit seen topping $100 bn

Insurers’ 2011 disaster hit seen topping $100 bn
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First Published: Tue, Dec 13 2011. 06 43 PM IST

File photo
File photo
Updated: Tue, Dec 13 2011. 06 43 PM IST
London: Insurers look set to absorb natural catastrophe claims of over $100 billion in 2011, more than double the total for 2010, making it the second most costly natural disaster year on record, reinsurer Swiss Re said.
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This year’s natural catastrophe hit will still fall short of the $123 billion picked up by the insurance industry in 2005, when Hurricane Katrina devastated the city of New Orleans, Martin Bisping, Swiss Re’s head of non-life risk transformation, told reporters at a briefing in London.
Swiss Re, the world’s second-biggest reinsurer, is due to publish detailed natural catastrophe loss estimates for 2011 on Thursday, a spokesman for the company said.
This year’s surge in catastrophe claims reflects a spate of major natural disasters including the 11 March Japanese earthquake and tsunami, tornadoes in the US, and heavy flooding in Australia and Thailand.
The increase in claims has mopped up some of the insurance industry’s spare capital, relieving competitive pressure and supporting insurance and reinsurance prices after several years of declines, insurers and brokers have said.
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First Published: Tue, Dec 13 2011. 06 43 PM IST