Private and public insurance entities saw an estimated $15 billion of global losses during the first quarter – close to both average and median losses of the last 10 years, according to Aon’s Q1 Global Catastrophe Recap Report.
However, potential loss development is likely to increase the total further. Aon said.
On the other hand, global economic natural disaster losses of $63 billion (which include both insured and non-insured losses) were well above average when compared to the 21st Century baseline of $53 billion and significantly higher than the median of $38 billion (which is not skewed by the record year of 2011), Aon said.
These economic losses were largely driven by the devastating earthquake in Turkey and Syria, which had a price tag of approximately $39.1 billion and comprised more than half of total global, said Aon, noting that the final toll could be significantly higher, as the entire amount of actual physical damage will likely not be settled for months to come.
Key additional findings from the report include:
- Severe convective storms in the U.S. brought insured losses in excess of $5.5 billion, including losses of $3 billion from U.S. storms on March 1-3.
- Most of the Q1 insured losses were generated by events in the United States (58%) and EMEA (25%).
- A major contributor to the global Q1 insurance losses was the unprecedented weather-related losses in New Zealand within a span of four weeks: the Auckland flooding and Cyclone Gabrielle. Current estimates of insured losses from those two events alone are close to $2 billion.
- The magnitude-7.8 earthquake in southern Turkey and northern Syria was the strongest event, which claimed more than 57,000 lives and caused widespread destruction.
- Q1 was the deadliest first quarter since 2010, when the destructive earthquake in Haiti resulted in approximately 160,000 fatalities.
- January 2023 was the seventh warmest for the globe dating to 1850, while February 2023 was the fourth warmest globally and March 2023 will likely rank as the second warmest for the globe.
Photograph: People stand by a collapsed building in Kahramanmaras, southern Turkey, Sunday, Feb. 12, 2023. Six days after earthquakes in Syria and Turkey killed tens of thousands, sorrow and disbelief are turning to anger and tension over a sense that there has been an ineffective, unfair and disproportionate response to the historic disaster. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
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