2016 was an exceptional year for flood related disasters

Published: Tuesday, 10 January 2017 16:10

2016 was the costliest twelve months for natural catastrophe losses in the last four years, according to Munich Re. Global losses totalled US$ 175bn, a good two-thirds more than in the previous year, and very nearly as high as the figure for 2012 (US$ 180bn). The share of uninsured losses – the so-called protection or insurance gap – remained substantial at around 70 percent. Almost 30 percent of the losses, some US$ 50bn, were insured.

“After three years of relatively low nat cat [natural catastrophe] losses, the figures for 2016 are back in the mid-range, where they are expected to be. Losses in a single year are obviously random and cannot be seen as a trend”, said member of the Board of Management Torsten Jeworrek. “The high percentage of uninsured losses, especially in emerging markets and developing countries, remains a concern. Greater insurance density is important, as it helps to alleviate the financial consequences of a catastrophe for more people. With its risk knowledge, the insurance industry would in fact be able to bear a much greater portion of such unpredictable risks.”

Key natural catastrophe figures of 2016: