Insurers to Pay Record $135 Billion for 2017 Disasters

 
 

natural disasters insured losses 2017Last year saw a host of natural catastrophes, including a trio of devastating hurricanes in the Atlantic region, severe wildfires in the United States, massive earthquakes in Mexico, a damaging late frost in Europe, and heavy flooding in China and southern Asia.

As a result, the final tally of insured losses hit a record high of $135 billion, according to Munich Re. Overall losses totaled $330 billion, the second-costliest year ever recorded, topped only by 2011, when losses reached $345 billon in today’s dollars.

Disasters in North America accounted for 83% of overall losses and 93% of insured losses, although the insurance gap in developing countries skews the distribution somewhat.

The overall loss figure almost doubled the 10-year, inflation-adjusted average of $170 billion, while insured losses were almost three times higher than the average of $49 billion. Munich Re reported 710 natural catastrophes in 2017, exceeding the average of 605.

Some 10,000 people were killed in natural disasters during the year.

 
Morgan O'Rourke

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About the Author

Morgan O’Rourke is editor in chief of Risk Management and director of publications for the Risk & Insurance Management Society, Inc. (RIMS)

 
 
 

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