November 4th, 2011

Week’s Top Stories: October 29 - November 4, 2011

Posted at 10:00 AM ET

Guy Carpenter Asia Pacific Catastrophe Report 2011; Executive Summary: In our 2010 Asia Pacific Catastrophe report, we described how the Asia Pacific region has significant exposure to a wide variety of catastrophe perils. The events of the past 18 months have demonstrated how real these exposures are: a series of significant catastrophe losses in our region during 2010 and 2011 has turned the world’s focus on the Asia Pacific area.

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Guy Carpenter Expands Asia Pacific Team With New Appointments in Singapore and Sydney: Guy Carpenter & Company announced the expansion of its risk management capabilities in the Asia Pacific region with a number of senior-level appointments.

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Update: Floods in Thailand: Thailand has experienced its worst flooding in years over the last few months, leaving more than 420 people dead and causing severe damage across northern and central regions of the country. The floods have severely damaged and disrupted manufacturing operations in Thailand. Flooding has forced at least seven huge industrial estates in central regions to close, prompting the Federation of Thai Industries to warn that damage to the industrial sector will be in the billions of dollars.

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Solvency II Pillar Two: Corporate Governance: To support Solvency II compliance, (re)insurers need to implement rigorous corporate governance programs that address all areas of the company, from the tone and activities of company leadership through granular risk and capital management activities. Consistent with the principles of enterprise risk management, the corporate governance framework should define a clear and robust organizational structure - including an adequate operational structure, the clear allocation of tasks and responsibilities, organizational transparency and efficient information systems across all business activities. The structure should delineate a clear separation between the risk management function and the audit function. There should be a clearly apparent independence of the two functions from each other. Management’s responsibilities must be evident.

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Risk Profile, Appetite and Tolerance: Fundamental Concepts in Risk Management and Reinsurance Effectiveness: Prior to the recent turbulence in the financial markets, insurers and reinsurers were increasing their use of enterprise risk management to make risk and capital management decisions. While this was driven in part by rating agencies and regulators, many carriers began to recognize the value of metric-based frameworks and capital models in evaluating their portfolios.

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Modeling the Impact of a Casualty Catastrophe: Look no further than today’s headlines to see how a single catastrophic event or lawsuit can have far-reaching effects. Over the past few years, several incidents, seemingly isolated, have ballooned into cross-border, cross-industry and cross-business line catastrophes. Chain reactions of liability - such as the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the collapse of Lehman Brothers and the Chinese Drywall product recall - have led insurers to ask: How do I assess the impact of a major legal liability catastrophe on my portfolio? And it’s not just the industry waiting for an answer: stockholders, analysts, rating agencies and regulators are listening, too.

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