June severe thunderstorms cause nearly $3bn economic loss in Europe, according to Impact Forecasting catastrophe report

July 3, 2014

CHICAGO, July 3, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Impact Forecasting, the catastrophe model development center of excellence at Aon Benfield, today releases the latest edition of its monthly Global Catastrophe Recap report, which reviews the natural disaster perils that occurred worldwide during June 2014. Aon Benfield is the global reinsurance intermediary and capital advisor of Aon plc (NYSE:AON).


The report reveals that an outbreak of severe thunderstorms affected Western and Central Europe during the first half of the month, causing significant hail damage in parts of Germany, France and Belgium, and killing at least six people in Germany.

The French Federation of Insurance Companies noted that 363,000 residential, automobile and business claims had been filed in France alone as a result of the severe weather, with insurance payouts forecast at EUR900 million (USD1.25 billion).

Overall economic losses from the event across Central Europe were listed in excess of EUR2.0 billion (USD2.75 billion).

The losses marked the second consecutive summer in which parts of Europe have endured major insured losses as a result of hail; in 2013, insurers paid more than USD4.0 billion in claims from hailstorms, mostly in Germany and France.

Adam Podlaha, head of Impact Forecasting, said: “For the second year running, hail-inducing thunderstorms have caused significant damage during the summer months in Europe. Given the recent level of losses for this peril, both in Europe and in the U.S., there is an increasing opportunity for the development of models to help insurers more accurately evaluate their exposures. With exponential advances in computing power, model developers will gradually be able to address the challenge of modelling this natural hazard at the high spatial resolution required to make the results meaningful.”

The United States endured several rounds of convective weather during June, with tornadoes, hail and damaging winds leading to aggregate economic losses expected to reach the multi-billions of dollars, with insurance losses well exceeding the USD1.0 billion threshold.

The greatest impact was felt during a near-weeklong event that led to significant hail, straight-line wind, and flash flood damage across parts of the Midwest, Plains, Rockies, Southwest, and the Tennessee Valley, killing three people. Softball-sized hail and winds gusting beyond 90 mph (150 kph) led to economic damages totaling approximately USD850 million, with insured losses in excess of USD550 million.

At least five EF-4 tornadoes touched down in the Plains during a 36-hour stretch, four occurring in northeast Nebraska, devastating the small town of Pilger.

Elsewhere during the month, monsoonal rains caused significant damage in China, killing dozens of people and resulting in economic losses of more than USD2.0 billion. The Ministry of Civil Affairs (MCA) noted that nearly 200,000 homes were damaged or destroyed by flood inundation.

Flooding rains occurred in southern Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina, killing at least 15 people. More than 500,000 people were directly affected or evacuated from their homes as several main rivers overflowed their banks. Preliminary damage estimates to residential property and infrastructure in Argentina alone were listed in excess of ARS500 million (USD62 million).

Torrential rains and severe thunderstorms killed at least 15 people in northeast Bulgaria, resulting in residential and infrastructure damages of more than BGN55 million (USD38 million).

Tropical Storm Hagibis made landfall in southern China’s Guangdong Province with 80 kph (50 mph) winds. No serious injuries or fatalities were reported as the storm damaged roughly 1,000 homes, with economic losses listed at CNY814 million (USD131 million).

Tropical Storm Boris made landfall in near the border of southern Mexico’s Chiapas and Oaxaca states as a minimal 40 kph (65 mph) system after first spreading heavy rains into Guatemala. At least six people were killed as widespread flooding and landslides were reported in each country. Hundreds of homes were damaged.

To view the full Impact Forecasting June 2014 Global Catastrophe Recap report, please follow the link below:

To access the Catastrophe Insight website, please visit: www.aonbenfield.com/catastropheinsight

Please note that the Impact Forecasting 1H 2014 Global Catastrophe Recap report will be released on July 23, 2014.

About Aon Benfield

Aon Benfield, a division of Aon plc (NYSE: AON), is the world’s leading reinsurance intermediary and full-service capital advisor. We empower our clients to better understand, manage and transfer risk through innovative solutions and personalized access to all forms of global reinsurance capital across treaty, facultative and capital markets. As a trusted advocate, we deliver local reach to the world’s markets, an unparalleled investment in innovative analytics, including catastrophe management, actuarial and rating agency advisory. Through our professionals’ expertise and experience, we advise clients in making optimal capital choices that will empower results and improve operational effectiveness for their business. With more than 80 offices in 50 countries, our worldwide client base has access to the broadest portfolio of integrated capital solutions and services. To learn how Aon Benfield helps empower results, please visit aonbenfield.com.

About Impact Forecasting® LLC

Impact Forecasting is a catastrophe modeling center of excellence whose seismologists, meteorologists, engineers, mathematicians, finance risk management and insurance professionals analyze the financial implications of natural and man-made catastrophes around the world. Impact Forecasting’s experts develop software tools and models that help clients understand risks from hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, wildfires and terrorist attacks on property, casualty and crop insurers and reinsurers. To find out more about Impact Forecasting® LLC, visit www.impactforecasting.com.

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SOURCE Aon plc

Source: PR Newswire

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