Global insurers saw the lowest expenses associated with those catastrophes they’ve seen since 2009.
According to the largest reinsurance company on the planet, last year’s costs for natural disaster insurance claims – that is, the expenses from catastrophes such as earthquakes and massive storms – were lower than they have been since 2009.
The reinsurer released a report that looked back over the last year and showed it was less costly than the last six.
The reinsurer in question was Munich Re, which released its analysis of natural disaster insurance costs for 2015 in its annual Natural Disaster Review. The company explained that El Niño had played an integral role in keeping the global insurance costs from major storms under control last year. El Niño is the result of warming Pacific Ocean waters and it leads to changes in temperature and rainfall patterns.
Last year, the costs associated with natural disaster insurance claims came to an estimated $27 billion.
Those losses occurred as El Niño effectively reduced the creation and build-up of hurricanes over the North Atlantic. Those are among the storms that have a track record for leaving the most expensive damage behind for the insurance industry. Without their development, it has meant that claims have been kept to a minimum over the last few years.
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Munich Re’s report stated that the insurance claims made in 2014 for natural disasters had totaled $31 billion. That also represented a figure that was lower than the 10 year average, which was $56 billion per year.
Last year, the company’s records showed that a Nepal earthquake in April led to the death of many of the 23,000 total people who were killed in natural disasters that year. That number was far larger than that of 2014, in which 7,700 people were killed in natural catastrophes. However, both years saw far fewer deaths resulting from those causes than the 10 year average, which was 68,000 per year.
The most expensive event affecting natural disaster, last year, was the slew of winter storms that pounded the northeastern parts of the United States and into Canada in February.