Reinsurance News

Public COVID-19 losses among re/insurers up 23% to $24.8bn

18th August 2020 - Author: Luke Gallin

Publicly recorded COVID-19-related losses among the largest global insurance and reinsurance companies have increased by almost 23% to $24.8 billion, according to data compiled by Zurich-based financial services advisory, PeriStrat LLC.

We wrote on July 27th that publicly reported losses from the coronavirus pandemic among the largest re/insurers had reached $20.2455 billion.

Since then, loss estimates continued to trend upwards through second-quarter 2020 earnings releases, revealing that the trend hasn’t changed over the past few weeks as additional losses were reported by firms of all shapes and sizes.

According to data compiled by PeriStrat LLC, operated by Hans-Joachim Guenther, the total volume of publicly recorded COVID-19 losses among the largest insurers and reinsurers has jumped by more than 22% to $24.797 billion, as at August 15th, 2020.

In its analysis, PeriStrat again notes that this loss total remains lower than the majority of publicised market loss estimates, which range from $30 billion to $80 billion.

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A full list of publicly disclosed COVID-19 loss estimates can be found here, alongside the date on which these figures were released.

As we wrote in July, among the highest public loss numbers collected by PeriStrat includes Lloyd’s of London at $3.65 billion (the mid-point of its market loss range), Swiss Re at $2.5 billion, and AXA at $1.7 billion. Followed by Munich Re at $1.66 billionChubb at $1.37 billionZurich at $750 million, Allianz at $724 million, and SCOR at $530 million.

Data compiled by PeriStrat as at August 15th, reveals that Lloyd’s remains in the top spot with a mid-point of $3.65 billion, Swiss Re remains at $2.5 billion, Munich Re at $1.776 billion, AXA at a smaller $1.47 billion, Allianz at $1.415 billion, and Chubb at $1.37 billion.

As noted by PeriStrat, updated information was available for Zurich ($750mn), QBE ($600mn), Talanx, and Enstar ($46.9mn).

Analysts acknowledged that the total market loss will depend heavily on the outcome of court rulings on business interruption (BI) wordings. In the UK, the FCA is currently seeking a general court ruling on this issue, but the outcome is still open.

Meanwhile, in the U.S., it remains uncertain whether potential policymaker interventions could force insurers to respond to COVID-19 BI claims.

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