Daily Willis Review- October 25, 2017

Increase in purchasing of reinsurance possible at January renewals: Willis Re
Cedants may increase their purchasing of reinsurance cover during January 1 renewals, according to Alkis Tsimaratos, Managing Director, Head of EMEA, West/South, Willis Re.

He made the comments in an Insurance Insider feature on reinsurance buying habits published during the Baden-Baden reinsurance meeting.

Participants were asked if they thought additional reinsurance cover will be purchased in January renewals as a result of the current competitive rates.

“Potentially yes, but not due to competitiveness of rates,” he said. “The current Q3 U.S. loss environment and historical loss environment in Europe is advocating for more aggregate covers or second retention sublayer ones.

“However, for most, securing the existing coverages at acceptable terms for all parties is probably the main focus that we are seeing at the moment.”

When asked if he thought the trend of centralized reinsurance spending was coming to a halt or reversing, he said: “We don’t think so. More than coming to a halt or reversing, the centralization strategies are maturing.

“As companies are getting a better grasp on their risk appetites and requirements, the use of internal vehicles is being deployed with more business acumen – alongside the financial rationale that they absolutely provide.

“Hence, groups are becoming more tactical at using intra-group vs extra-group, with better-informed decisions and trade-offs between open market use, local or global, and own retention.”

Lloyd’s lowers claims estimates for Harvey and Irma by 10%
Lloyd’s has announced it has revised its net claims estimate for Windstorms Harvey and Irma to a combined $3.9 billion, in addition to a preliminary claims estimate of $0.9 billion for Windstorm Maria.

It also reported that the market has so fair paid claims of almost $900 million for Harvey, Irma and Maria.

Lloyd’s Performance Management Director Jon Hancock said that as more information became available, the market was relying less on preliminary estimates.

“The claims estimate for Harvey and Irma has reduced approximately 10% from the precautionary figure we issued with our half year results last month,” he said.

“We are experiencing one of the most active hurricane seasons this century and I am very proud of the way that the Lloyd’s market is responding to these events.

“Focus remains on getting policyholders back up and running, and we are paying claims quickly despite some very difficult conditions in the affected areas.

“Our ability to pay claims quickly even in difficult circumstance is a clear example of the valuable role that our sector plays in society.”

Sompo announces insurance alliances with two of Africa’s largest financial groups
Bermuda-based Sompo International Holdings and its subsidiary Sompo Holdings have announced a strategic partnership to expand their presence in Africa.

Sompo International will form alliances with Sanlam Limited, the largest financial group in South Africa, and SAHAM Finances, which is the biggest pan-African insurance group, excluding South Africa.

It said the partnership, which will be executed by Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Insurance (SJNK), will give it access to new markets by leveraging the experience and existing footprint of Sanlam and SAHAM.

SJNK said that since establishing an office in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 2014, it had expanded its customer support and insurance market research system throughout the continent, and that the partnership will allow it to support existing Japanese customers in Africa, as well as expanding distribution of new products to local customers.

Junichi Tanaka, Managing Executive Officer of Sompo Holdings and SJNK, said: “This alliance allows us to build Sompo’s reputation as a strong player in Africa by expanding our support to Japanese customers entering the continent.

“Through our new partners we will now have access to 27 African countries in total, more than double the presence of our peers across the continent, providing us with the largest scope of coverage in Africa.”

Karen Clark & Company releases Severe Convective Storm Model
Karen Clark & Company (KCC) has launched version 1.0 of its Severe Convective Storm (SCS) Reference Model.

It said that over the last several years in the U.S., annual SCS losses have consistently exceeded $10 billion, and the latest KCC SCS Reference Model shows that expected average annual aggregate losses are now approaching $20 billion.

The new model uses physical modeling methodology and high resolution atmospheric data to more accurately capture the dynamics of this peril.

It is a multi-peril model and simulates the hazards of hail versus tornadoes and straight-line winds, the company said.

Karen Clark, KCC President and Chief Executive Officer, said: “There has been significant industry demand for a more credible and accurate SCS model.

“While this peril does not pose a solvency threat to most insurers, claims from severe thunderstorms eat away at earnings each year, and our clients want to make sure their rates reflect the most up-to-date science and their actual loss experience.

“We’re pleased to release this new model that can accurately reproduce SCS losses.”