PERILS final estimate for New Zealand North Island flood insured loss at NZ $2.23bn

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Zurich-based catastrophe insurance data provider PERILS has disclosed its fourth and final insurance market loss estimate for the severe flooding that impacted the North Island of New Zealand in late January 2023, pegging the total at NZ $2.23 billion.

perils-ag-logoThe latest figure compares to the third loss estimate of NZ $1.995 billion issued by PERILS on 3 August 2023, six months after the event – , which occurred during the period of 27 January to 2 February 2023.

It is composed of personal lines property losses which represent 69% and commercial lines property losses representing 31% of the total industry loss, according to PERILS.

The second estimate was at NZ $1.75 billion, while the initial estimate of the insurance and reinsurance market loss due to this event was estimated at NZ $1.65 billion.

This final industry loss footprint, the data insurance provider stated, is based on detailed loss data collected from the majority of the New Zealand insurance market.

It provides a comprehensive breakdown of property losses by postcode, with the data further divided by residential and commercial lines, and loss amounts split into buildings, contents and business interruption losses where available. It is complemented with postcode-level rain accumulation data.

Outlining the event, the catastrophe insurance data provider said that from 27 January to 2 February 2023, extreme rainfall caused severe inundation across the greater Auckland Region and surrounding areas on the North Island of New Zealand.

“The event was fuelled by extraordinarily warm and humid weather throughout the summer 2022/23, which culminated in record-breaking rainstorms on 27 January and 1 February. Most affected was the Auckland region with a population of 1.7 million. Four people died in the event with several thousand evacuated,” PERILS explained.

Christoph Oehy, CEO of PERILS, commented: “The Auckland Floods was the first loss event covered by PERILS for New Zealand. Our series of reports on the event provides a wealth of data to support the industry’s work to better understand the impacts of severe storms and floods in New Zealand.

“There is of course always more to do to ensure we can continue to deliver value to our partners to better understand the impacts of Cat events. It has been a very challenging year for our insurance partners dealing with the Auckland Floods and Cyclone Gabrielle, two exceptional weather events in quick succession. PERILS thanks them for their ongoing commitment and support, enabling us to make such rich industry loss data available.”

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