Quest for granularity of data is theme of April 1

Mar 30, 2012 by Adrian Hönig in  Baden-Baden Meeting

The quest for increased granularity of data has been one of the main themes of the April 1 renewal – a trend set to continue for other major international reinsurance renewals in light of lessons learned from the record-breaking catastrophe losses of 2011.

Geoff Bromley, president of Aon Benfield International, told Insurance Day clients were generally appreciative of reinsurer’s needs for more information on the back of major losses such as those incurred in the Thailand floods during the fourth quarter of 2011.

The Thailand loss is now considered the largest ever insured loss from a single flood event with Swiss Re’s latest sigma report estimatating the market cost to be $12bn.

One of the major drivers of this loss has been losses from Japanese interests abroad (JIA), and Bromley said clients had returned to the market for similar levels of JIA cover at April 1.

“The big message is on granularity of data, and the quest for increased granularity has been a major theme of this renewal,” he said.

“We will see that continue for other countries of the world where interests abroad are insured. People want to know what they are underwriting.”

Bromley said clients had appreciated the need for greater granularity at the renewal, but accepted the change was “not something you can flick a switch to change”.

He praised the response of the international reinsurance sector to the losses of 2011, which he described as “incredibly resilient”.

“I’m very impressed by the reinsurance market and I don’t think it has been a disproportionate reaction at renewal,” he said.

“Claims – at multiples for which there has been no historical experience – have been paid at speed and contract certainty has been maintained, despite uncertainty caused by the timing of losses such as the Tohoku quake and Thailand floods.”

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