Zurich Insurance has given their latest estimate of fourth quarter losses relating to the natural disasters for last year. The Thailand floods and New Zealand Earthquakes together contributed to net fourth quarter losses of between USD200 million and USD250 million (£127 million and £159 million), the Swiss Insurance company reported.
A specific estimate is expected to be released with the 2011 annual results on Febraury 16, the company said in a statement.
“Given the exceptional frequency and overall severity of catastrophes and significant weather related loss-events throughout 2011, including the events mentioned above, cumulative losses have triggered the groups global aggregate catastrophe reinsurance cover with additional recoveries of $130 million.”
Despite experiencing the “worst catastrophe year” since 2005, the insurer reported a 64 per cent jump in third quarter net profit, to USD1.2 billion (£764 million).
However its combined ratio – a measure of insurers’ profitability – weakened to 98.8 percent from 97.7 percent while turnover rose three percent to $15.4 billion over the three months ending September.