Canadian Underwriter

AXIS Capital estimates US$104 million in Q2 2016 losses from weather and cat events, including Fort McMurray wildfire

July 19, 2016   by Canadian Underwriter

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Pembroke, Bermuda-based AXIS Capital Holdings Limited announced on Monday its preliminary estimate of second quarter 2016 catastrophe and weather-related losses, including major losses from the Fort McMurray wildfire.

Analyzing documentsAXIS Capital’s preliminary estimate of Q2 2016 cat and weather-related pre-tax losses was US$104 million, net of estimated recoveries from reinsurance and including the impact of estimated reinstatement premiums. Of this amount, US$71 million is from major natural catastrophes and US$33 million is from weather events, AXIS Capital said in a press release.

The company was impacted by 20 events globally with estimated industry insured losses in excess of US$19 billion, including approximately US$11 billion from major natural catastrophes and US$8 billion from weather events. Major natural catastrophes included the Fort McMurray wildfires, the Japanese and Ecuadorian earthquakes and the European floods. Weather events include multiple events in the United States, including the recent hailstorms in Texas.

Both the insurance and reinsurance segments of the company contributed to these pre-tax net losses, AXIS Capital reported. Within the insurance segment, pre-tax net losses of US$41 million primarily arose from U.S. weather events. Within the reinsurance segment, pre-tax net losses of US$63 million primarily arose from major natural catastrophes.

The company’s loss estimate is primarily based on its ground-up assessment of losses from individual contracts and treaties exposed to the affected regions, including preliminary information from clients, brokers and loss adjusters, AXIS Capital said in the release. Industry insured loss estimates, market share analyses and catastrophe modelling analyses were also taken into account where appropriate.

“Due to the nature of the catastrophe and weather-related losses, including the complexity of loss assessment and factors contributing to the losses, and the preliminary nature of the information available to prepare these estimates, future estimates of losses and reinsurance recoveries and the actual ultimate amount of losses and reinsurance recoveries for these events may be materially different from this current estimate,” AXIS Capital noted.

The company is a global provider of specialty lines insurance and treaty reinsurance with shareholders’ equity at March 31, 2016 of US$6 billion. AXIS Capital has locations in Bermuda, Canada, the United States, Europe, Singapore, the Middle East and Latin America.