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by : Alpha Insurance Analysts

Preliminary estimates from Swiss Re sigma show that natural catastrophes and man-made disasters caused USD 52 billion in losses to society in 2009, of which USD 24 billion were insured.

According to initial estimates from Swiss Re’s forthcoming sigma study, the total cost to society of natural catastrophes and man-made disasters in 2009 was USD 52 billion versus USD 267 billion in 2008. The cost to insurers in 2009 was USD 24 billion. Insured losses were below average due to a calm US hurricane season.

In 2009, natural catastrophes will cost insurers roughly USD 21billion, with man-made disasters triggering additional claims of approximately USD 3 billion. By way of comparison, total insured losses had soared to over USD 50 billion worldwide in 2008. The lower figure for 2009 resulted from the calm US hurricane season. Contrary to the US, Europe suffered above average insured losses.

Please click on the link below to view the full Swiss Re press release.