JLT Re outlines the impact of the Q3 hurricanes in a report launched during Baden Baden Reinsurance conference 2017

Hurricane’s Harvey, Irma and Maria could be market defining, according to JLT Re, with combined insured losses expected to reach the $1bn mark.

JLT Re global chief executive Mike Reynolds said: “Prior to this year’s hurricane season, expectations heading into 2018 were for a softening, but moderating market. But hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria brought a decisive end to a five-year period of below-average global catastrophe losses. In fact, 2017 will be only the third year on record in which global insured catastrophe losses have exceeded USD 100 billion (along with 2005 and 2011).”

He added that JLT Re expected the losses of 2017 to “change perceptions of risk going forward”.

In the firm’s report, ‘Winds of change’, launched today, JLT Re outlines the potential impact Harvey, Irma and Maria will have on the reinsurance market, and highlights the how this stacks up against previous market-changing losses.

JLT Re global head of analytics David Flandro said: “Circumstances today are considerably different to previous large loss years. It must be remembered that in 2001 and 2005, for example, the sector was respectively entering and exiting the liability crisis which, all told, cost carriers hundreds of billions of dollars worldwide. This meant that the sector’s capital position was both lower and more uncertain during these years.”

The firm believes that the sector’s existing capital base is sufficient to service the bulk of losses sustained so far this year.