Sunday 15 September 2019

Hiscox counts cost of hurricanes Irma and Harvey

The FTSE 250 firm said the estimate was within the modelled range for a disaster of that scale.

Irma debris
Irma debris

By Ravender Sembhy, Press Association City Editor

Insurer Hiscox has laid bare the impact of hurricanes Harvey and Irma, revealing the natural disasters will cost the firm approximately $225 million (£168 million) in claims.

The FTSE 250 firm said the estimate was within the modelled range for a disaster of that scale and was based on an insured market loss of $35 billion for Hurricane Irma and $25 billion for Hurricane Harvey.

Parts of the Caribbean and US have been devastated by the hurricanes, with insurers expected to stomach a total hit of around £150 billion.

Chief executive Bronek Masojada said the natural disasters are already having an impact on insurance rates.

He added: “Paying claims from devastating events like these is precisely what we are here for. Our focus is to get our customers back on their feet as quickly as we can.

“These events are already having an impact on rates in the global insurance market, particularly in affected areas and specific sectors.

“After a number of years of rate reductions, we are starting to see price corrections, most acutely in affected lines such as large property insurance and catastrophe reinsurance, which we expect to spread to non-affected lines.”

Earlier this month Hiscox, which provides cover for around 60,000 homes in the UK, warned that “natural catastrophes” would run up a big bill for the insurance industry this year, but assured that the sector would be able to cope.

The group added that it stills has depth of cover in its reinsurance programme.

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