May 18th, 2012

Week’s Top Stories: May 12 - 18, 2012

Posted at 11:00 AM ET

GC Securities:* Catastrophe Bond Issuance Tops USD1.3 Billion in Q1 2012: The first quarter of 2012 was the most active first quarter on record for the global catastrophe bond market, according to GC Securities. During the quarter, a total of USD1.34 billion of risk capital was issued through eight transactions, exceeding last year’s record of USD1.02 billion for the same time period.

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Lessons Learned From the Catastrophes of 2011: The Marsh Point of View: Guy Carpenter sister company, Marsh, has just published “Lessons Learned from the Catastrophes of 2011.” According to the report, the scale of the catastrophes experienced in 2011 exceeded previous loss-modeling predictions and has challenged established thinking on the nature of risk. Companies now need to re-examine their risk management strategies and introduce new methodologies to strengthen their operational and financial resilience.

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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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Reinsurance Rates Rise at April 1, 2012 Renewals: Reinsurance rates rose as the market continues to work through the impact of the events of 2011, according to Guy Carpenter. In a briefing released today, Guy Carpenter reports that this year’s April 1 renewals are continuing the general trends observed at January 1, 2012.

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What to Watch in 2012: 2012 will undoubtedly be a challenging year, but Guy Carpenter believes that growth opportunities exist - or can be created - for companies that have the fortitude to see and develop them. Below we examine 10 major themes that the (re)insurance sector will face in 2012.

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And, you may have missed…

TRIA, U.S. Terrorism and International Terrorism: Effect on the Insurance and Reinsurance Markets: Commercial insurers are strongly supportive of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002 (TRIA), as it provides them an ultimate safety net for their terrorism exposures. However, the residual risk for terror events retained by insurers below the triggers and retention levels set by the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2007 (TRIPRA), coupled with the relatively high cost of reinsurance in key exposure zones, means that insurers remain cautious about terrorism exposure. As a result, they continue to avoid accumulating high-profile urban exposures.

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* Securities or investments, as applicable, are offered in the United States through GC Securities, a division of MMC Securities Corp., a US registered broker-dealer and member FINRA/SIPC. Main Office: 1166 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10036. Phone: (212) 345-5000. Securities or investments, as applicable, are offered in the European Union by GC Securities, a division of MMC Securities (Europe) Ltd., which is authorized and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. Reinsurance products are placed through qualified affiliates of Guy Carpenter & Company, LLC. MMC Securities Corp., MMC Securities (Europe) Ltd. and Guy Carpenter & Company, LLC are affiliates owned by Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. This communication is not intended as an offer to sell or a solicitation of any offer to buy any security, financial instrument, reinsurance or insurance product.

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