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Claims paid on Feb M7 Fukushima, Japan earthquake pass $1.62bn


Insured losses from the Magnitude 7.0 earthquake that struck off the coast of the Fukushima region of Japan on February 13th 2021 have continued to rise and at a faster pace, with the loss to the insurance and reinsurance industry now reaching above US $1.62 billion, according to data from the General Insurance Association of Japan.

parametric-earthquake-insuranceThe latest data from the GIAJ counts claims from member companies of the General Insurance Association of Japan and the Foreign Non-Life Insurance Association of Japan, as of May 14th.

The $1.62 billion of insurance and reinsurance market losses from this earthquake is now far above where estimates had sat after the event.

Initially, reports had suggested this earthquake in Japan may have driven a few hundred million dollars of claims.

Then, back in March, the General Insurance Association of Japan, said that 141,166 claims had been counted from the quake, with around 6,583 paid out as of the middle of the month, amounting to roughly US $36 million at the time.

A little later, in early April, the CRESTA organisation revealed that it believed the M7.0 earthquake in Japan could end up having billion dollar industry loss potential, the highest forecast yet for this event.

As of the end of March, the GIAJ updated its numbers as the total amount of claims paid approached US $900 million, or almost JPY 95 billion.

Then we reported again that the GIAJ had lifted the claims total to just over US $1.26 billion, or almost JPY 138.28 billion, as of April 16th, based on 221,994 claims that had been filed, with 165,866 settled and 133,359 claims payments made.

The latest data shows that as of May 14th 2021, 259,525 claims had been filed from this earthquake event, with 216,638 settled and 176,402 payments made.

Claim payments so far amount to JPY 178,238,374, which is roughly US $1.62 billion.

As ever, it’s important to note that this does not include the full international insurance and reinsurance market exposure to this earthquake event.

Some international carriers are not counted, while other forms of protection that are backed by the insurance and reinsurance industry also may not be counted in it.

As we explained just last week, this February earthquake off the Fukushima coast of Japan actually trigged a parametric insurance product for a manufacturing company.

Which shows that there can be more limit at risk from the international insurance and reinsurance market than that counted in typical Japanese property policies.

Interestingly, as of this latest update on the quake, claims paid in Japan’s Miyagi prefecture have overtaken those in Fukushima prefecture itself.

Miyagi prefecture now accounts for almost US $780 million of the claims from the earthquake, while Fukushima prefecture accounts for almost US $742 million.

Some reinsurance capital support has helped to pay claims from this earthquake in Japan, as our sources suggested a portion has fallen to reinsurers working in partnership with major Japanese insurers.

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