RVS Monte Carlo: AIR estimates the average annual loss from catastrophes at USD 92 billion

9 September 2019 — Mihaela CIRCU
AIR estimates that the global modeled insured average annual loss from catastrophes worldwide is about USD 92 billion, according to 2019 Global Modeled Catastrophe Losses report.

The 1 percent aggregate exceedance probability insured loss (or the 100-year return period loss) is nearly USD 288 billion, which is more than double the record losses seen in 2017 from Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria and other natural catastrophes. The 2019 report derives its loss metrics from the most current suite of global property and crop models from AIR, including new models and updates released during 2019 as well as databases of property values for more than 110 countries. The report excludes losses from AIR's pandemic, cyber, and casualty models.

The global aggregate average annual loss (AAL) and exceedance probability loss metrics for 2019 reflect changes in risk based on AIR's annual review of industry insured values around the world, which includes a complete update of its industry exposure database for New Zealand. The report also includes the impact of enhancements to the AIR Earthquake Model for New Zealand, AIR's suite of inland flood models in Central Europe, and the AIR Typhoon Model for China.

According to Milan SIMIC, Executive Vicepresident, AIR, the average for the last 10 years loss is situated at 73 billion USD.

Discussed in this year's report are global economic losses from catastrophes, which can vastly exceed insured losses depending on the region and peril. This "protection gap," the difference between economic and insured losses, highlights the significant burden that society faces when a disaster strikes. While the protection gap is often thought of as a problem confined to the developing world, the two earthquakes that struck Southern California in the first week of July-only 34 hours and less than 7 miles apart-highlight the fact that this issue can affect nations with highly developed insurance markets; statewide, only about 15 percent of California homeowners have earthquake insurance.

"While the global insurance industry continues to shine a light on the protection gap, our analyses indicate there's still work to be done to address the disparity between economic and insured losses," said Bill CHURNEY, President at AIR Worldwide. "With modeled average annual loss at less than a quarter of the global economic estimate, we're not seeing a significant narrowing trend. History has shown that higher insurance take-up allows society to recover more quickly from extreme events, and AIR will continue to work with the insurance and reinsurance industry, businesses, governments, and non-governmental organizations to reduce the protection gap."

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