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AXIS Capital sees $250m loss hit from Q3 catastrophes & weather


AXIS Capital, the Bermuda-based globally-active insurance and reinsurance company, has joined the catastrophe loss pre-announcements, saying that it expects a net and before tax hit of $250 million to its third-quarter results, the majority coming from hurricane Ida.

AXIS Capital logoThe company said that these Q3 catastrophe losses would cost it $219 million after-tax, with these figures all net of reinsurance or retrocession recoveries.

We assume the figures are also net of any share of losses passed onto AXIS’ third-party capital partners.

AXIS Capital said that hurricane Ida will be the most costly event of the quarter, at an estimated $175 million, which the company has based on an expected industry wide loss of $35 billion.

This is one of the higher industry loss estimates that a pre-announcement has featured so far this quarter, although $35 billion is roughly where our sources say they expected hurricane Ida will approach.

As well as catastrophe losses from Ida, AXIS Capital also took a hit from the European flooding from July, which it estimates will cost it $55 million, an estimate it has based on industry insured losses of approximately $13 billion, which is an average loss pick.

Another $20 million of the pre-announced losses are related to other catastrophe and weather-related events, the company explained.

AXIS’ loss estimates are delivered based on analysis of ground-up assessment of losses from individual exposed contracts and treaties covering the affected regions, and include preliminary information from clients, brokers and loss adjusters, the company said.

AXIS also noted uncertainty in these figures, as have every company pre-announcing this quarter, as the industry anticipates a possibility of loss creep emerging and some inflationary factors affecting claims.

Finally, AXIS also noted that excluding catastrophes and weather losses its current accident year combined ratio has continued to improve, which it says is consistent with progress observed in the first half of 2021.

Analysts said that AXIS’ estimate is a little below their expectations for the company, which they say reflects continued volatility reduction.

The company has also increased its use of third-party capital in recent years and its investor partners would be anticipated to take a share of the Q3 2021 loss burden.

Also pre-announcing losses this week, we’ve seen  a significant loss pre-announcement from Bermudian reinsurance firm RenaissanceRe, of $725 million net, while fellow Bermudian Arch Capital also said this week that it anticipates up to $345 million of net losses from Q3 catastrophe events and Everest Re reported an estimated $635 million hit.

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