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Insurers’ 2011 disaster hit seen topping $100 bn

Insurers’ 2011 disaster hit seen topping $100 bn

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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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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