As with Europe, 2013 was a year of flood in the Americas, with notable events in Alberta, Toronto and Colorado. The flood event in the Calgary, Alberta area of Canada resulted in estimated insured losses of around USD2 billion, with economic losses of USD4.8 billion (1). This event, combined with flash-flooding in Toronto, Ontario in July, meant Canada experienced its most expensive insured catastrophe loss year on record.
Posts Tagged ‘hurricane’
Guy Carpenter & Company released its 2013 Catastrophe Review, which shows that natural catastrophes and man-made disasters in 2013 resulted in insured losses of approximately $40 billion. Following above-average losses experienced in 2011 and 2012, 2013 provided a respite for the (re)insurance industry as insured losses were considerably less than the ten-year average of approximately $60 billion.
Super Typhoon Haiyan meets or surpasses the record of the strongest landfalling tropical cyclone in recorded history, and is among the strongest ever recorded. Haiyan made landfall during the early morning hours of November 8 near Guiuan, with estimated 1-minute wind speeds of 185-195 mph (300-315 km/hr). While it is still too early to fully assess impacts to the area, severe to complete wind damage is a near certainty adjacent to the storm track, with wave battering and water velocity damage most severe within 20 miles (32 km) of the storm track.
Richard Banyard, Senior Vice President, Lance Finley, Managing Director, Jane Furnas, Senior Vice President and Scott VanKoughnett, Senior Vice President
Insurance policies are carefully drafted to outline coverage that is needed by policyholders while also specifying those areas where coverage is not expected to apply - the goal is to provide contract certainty, not in the usual sense of timeliness of contract signing, but from the perspective of specific policy language. Sometimes, however, contract certainty is not so certain. Recent examples have shown that insurers are increasingly facing reinterpretations of their policies by the judicial system, regulators, politicians and even the public via social media, all exerting pressure on insurers to provide coverage not previously anticipated by the drafters and underwriters of those policies. As these claims are presented to the reinsurance market, pressure is also put on reinsurers to provide coverage that they may not have originally contemplated. Insurers need to know that their reinsurers partner with them in such situations, and that reinsurance contracts provide appropriate flexibility to help ensure the reinsurers’ promise to pay. The comments made in this article are intended solely to foster discussion on this topic.
The growth in convergence capital has resulted in ILS catastrophe risk pricing decoupling from price expectations in the traditional reinsurance market, with some ILS products now offering the most competitive terms for reinsurance buyers. Strong appetite for U.S. hurricane catastrophe bonds, for example, has tightened spreads in the secondary market by an average of approximately 45 percent on a weighted notional basis since issuance in 2012. Despite the significant decrease in ILS pricing over the last 12 months, investor demand continues to be robust. Indeed, projections by GC Securities indicate that the catastrophe bond market alone could reach USD23 billion by the end of 2016.
One of the more controversial discussions of the climate change question has been the subject of tropical cyclones, historical trends and expected shifts under global warming. The questions cannot be easily answered with either observations or climate models, and the subject has been one of heated debate in both scientific and political arenas.
A multi-day severe weather outbreak occurred during the period of May 28 to June 2 affecting a large area of the United States and Southern Ontario, Canada. The outbreak occurred along a complex and evolving frontal boundary as it pushed through the mainland into and during the weekend. Affected areas include the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, the South and Central Plains, the Mississippi Valley, the Midwest, the Great Lakes and New England.
Guy Carpenter & Company reports that the reinsurance sector has witnessed dynamic capital growth in 2012 and 2013, spurred by an influx of capital from alternative sources. In its June 2013 renewal briefing, Guy Carpenter finds that this surge in alternative or “convergence” capital has changed the nature of the sector’s capital structure, as investors grow increasingly comfortable with supplying capacity through a convergence of both traditional and alternative vehicles. This market dynamic has also begun to impact significantly reinsurance pricing for peak property catastrophe risks in the U.S., with surplus capacity and lower target returns driving downward pressure on pricing for June 1 renewals and likely through the remainder of 2013.