Global re/insurance broker Aon, in its Q3 Global Catastrophe Recap report, has stated that global insured losses from natural disaster events had reached $88 billion by the end of Q3 2023, 17% higher than the 21st-century annual average, driven by so-called secondary perils.
Aon highlights U.S. and Italian severe convective storms (SCS), and the Maui wildfire, as notable events during the period.
Year-to-date, economic losses total $295 billion, compared to a 21st-century annual average of $310 billion, according to Aon.
The aggregated death toll from 2023 natural catastrophe events had breached 75,000 during the same period, making 2023 the deadliest year since 2010.
Michal Lorinc, Head of Aon’s Catastrophe Insight, commented, “Global natural catastrophes killed many people and caused significant structural and economic damage during the first nine months of 2023.
“Wildfire and Severe Convective Storm were once again highly prominent, and Aon’s research reveals that both are becoming increasingly costly to insurers, communities and governments. In the U.S., around 80% of SCS loss growth can be explained by exposure change – highlighting the need for insurers to understand underlying exposures in their portfolios.”
In Q3 2023, there were at least four individual billion-dollar insured loss events for SCS in the U.S., which will likely increase to seven events due to continued loss development. For the first time, insured losses from SCS in the U.S. surpassed $50 billion and accounted for 60% of global insured losses, says the broker.
The peril was also a driver of losses in Europe, which endured two individual billion-dollar SCS events, including Italy recording its first billion-dollar loss from the peril.
Elsewhere around the world, natural disasters that took place in Q3 2023 include the widespread flooding in Beijing and several Chinese provinces in early August, which Aon says resulted in the costliest global economic loss event of Q3.
Additionally, on September 8th, a magnitude-6.8 earthquake occurred in the Moroccan High Atlas Mountain range, claiming nearly 3,000 lives, injuring more than 5,600 people, and causing significant material damage across the affected area.
The flash flooding in northeastern Libya in early September damaged thousands of buildings in Derna city and ranked as the second deadliest event of the year, with more than 4,300 fatalities.
However, hurricane losses in the U.S. were lower than average in Q3, which is considered the peak of the Pacific and Atlantic hurricane seasons. Two notable tropical systems, Hilary and Idalia, still caused significant losses that collectively reached billions of USD, added Aon.
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