2011 disaster losses break records from previous years

This year was one that brought disasters to areas all around the globe, and these catastrophes came with record breaking bills that have left the figures from previous years behind. According to the data from Swiss Re AG, a reinsurance company, the quakes and tsunami in Japan, the earthquakes in New Zealand, the Thailand floods, and the large number of American tornadoes brought a global disaster loss total up to a staggering $350 billion. The tremendous amount of devastation brought production at factories to a grinding halt and cut off…

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Higher insurance and reinsurance prices may be linked to new RMS catastrophe model

State Farm customers in northeastern Louisiana may soon be paying more for their homeowners insurance as the company looks to state regulators for approval of a rate increase of 19.5%. The insurer claims that higher rates are the result of recent fires, tornados and other natural disasters occurring in the state. Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon says that he has never before experienced such a steep increase in insurance rates, especially in the northern part of the states that are not often subject to such rate increases. The rate at which…

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Insurers spend billions on large weather events from 2011

Insurance companies are continuing to make payments to policyholders who suffered damage from large severe weather events earlier this year. Officials in Missouri have now named the tornado that ripped through Joplin’s center earlier in 2011 as the most expensive insurance event in the history of the state. It has been estimated that insurers have already spent approximately $1.13 billion on claims related to this occurrence, and that when all claims have been made and paid out, that number will have grown to almost $1.9 billion. According to John Huff…

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Virginia’s request for aid in wake of August earthquake is approved by FEMA

FEMA has approved a second request for aid coming from Virginia to help recover from a powerful earthquake that struck the state in August of this year. The 5.8-magnitude has caused more than $22 million in damage to date. Given the rarity of earthquakes in the Eastern U.S., few Virginia residents have adequate insurance coverage for such happenings. More than 1,404 homes have been damaged by the quake and the 40 aftershocks that shook the state in the following weeks. FEMA had initially denied the request for aid after insurers…

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Insurers unlikely to raise rates in the wake of Hurricane Irene, according to Allianz

Despite fears that disaster-prone 2011 will incite higher insurance rates in the future, Allianz, one of the largest commercial insurance companies in the world, says that the toll of the damage caused by natural disasters throughout the year will not prompt widespread hikes in premiums. Jay Ralph, a board member of Allianz in charge of the North American insurance market, spoke with reporters concerning the issue, noting that the excess capacity of the insurance industry is enough to weather the storm without any major changes in policies. However, insurers should…

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Nationwide posts first quarter profits for 2011, says major storm cut into earnings

Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. has released their earnings for the first half of 2011. The acclaimed insurance company posted profits just shy of $400 million, a marked decline from last year in which the company earned over a billion. Profit diminished by 48% in just the first quarter, a fact the insurer is quick to blame on the violent storms and other natural disasters wreaking havoc earlier this year. The company has also released its earnings for the second quarter, reporting further losses due to weather related issues. The previous…

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