This is how many millions Hurricane Irma will cost insurers

Estimates released

Hiscox, the international specialist insurer, has undertaken a first estimate of the impact of Hurricane Harvey.

Based on an insured market loss of US$25 billion (excluding the government backed National Flood Insurance Program), Hiscox estimates net claims of approximately US$150 million. This is within the Group’s modelled range of claims for an event of this nature, andreinsurance protections for the Group remain substantially intact.

The first major Hurricane to hit landfall in the US in over 12 years, Harvey unusually stalled over Houston creating a prolonged period of flooding for the region. Hiscox has two principal areas of exposure: through reinsurance business and through insurance lines, including flood cover for homeowners and businesses.

Hiscox Group CEO, Bronek Masojada, said: “Insurance exists to help individuals and companies recover from the devastation caused by events like this, and our priority is to pay claims quickly so that they can do that. At the same time, Harvey has also highlighted the lack of flood cover for large parts of the US market.”

Bronek added: “2017 will be an expensive year for natural catastrophes but the industry can cope.  Insurance remains a cyclical business and after a long period of price reductions, insurance rates in the affected areas and in specific sectors such as large property are likely to increase.  In the wider global insurance market for large risks, we expect rates to stabilise and begin to increase.” 

Hiscox will announce an estimate of net claims arising from Hurricane Irma, once the impact of that storm has become clearer.

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