December 26th, 2008

Week’s Top Stories: Dec 20 - 26, 2008

Posted at 3:11 PM ET

Reinsurance Pricing and the Changing Cost of Capital: Despite the ambiguity pervading financial and reinsurance markets, it is clear that systemic risk has increased. Unprecedented chaos in financial markets left investors more risk-averse than they were at the end of the summer.

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Price Bottoms Out for Aviation: The aviation renewal came without surprises and generally without change. After years of cedent-advantaged market conditions, pricing stabilized. Terms and conditions showed little (if any) change, and quoting was timely and disciplined.

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Financial Catastrophe Hits Japan, Net Income Off 67 Percent: A sagging economy has pushed non-life insurer earnings lower in Japan. After-tax net income for the seven largest companies dropped 67.1 percent for the first half of fiscal year 2008 (April 1, 2008 to September 30, 2008) relative to the same period in 2007-after adjustments for contingency reserve movements.

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The Adverse Development Super-Catastrophe: Property catastrophes make the news. Tangible and visual, the carnage can be conveyed with ease, and all can grasp the direct implications immediately.

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Book Value Update, Dec 22, 2008: Book values remained stable last week. The S&P 500 Banks Index implied book value has increased by three percentage points since the end of November, reflecting a 32 percent aggregate decline from December 31, 2007. The Guy Carpenter Global Composite regained some momentum, edging slightly higher from the previous week.

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Most Popular Keyword: World ROL Index

And, you may have missed …

Climate Change: A Debate Reshapes (Re)Insurance: The climate change debate is likely to continue unabated well into the future. Even if it is not settled anytime soon, the debate itself has already begun to affect the (re)insurance industry. Risk-bearers deal in probability routinely, making climate change another likelihood to consider.

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