Swiss Re expects price increases as growing risks drive demand


ZURICH • Swiss Re AG expects to see price increases across all of its businesses as more exposure to disasters such as hurricanes drives demand for coverage.

Pressure is rising to deliver profits through underwriting as the low interest-rate environment persists, the Zurich-based company said in a statement yesterday.

Swiss Re posted a surprise US$1.1 billion (RM4.62 billion) loss in the first half as it set aside money to cover future losses related to the Covid-19 crisis. Insurers globally face a double hit from the virus as it drives claims and puts pressure on income from investments.

Losses from hurricanes have grown in recent years and the company expects the trend to continue in 2020 as the storms hit areas with high insurance exposure. The current Atlantic hurricane season is the first to see 13 tropical storms form before September, Swiss Re said.

“Even before the Covid-19 crisis, most major markets were operating at below-average profitability,” Moses Ojeisekhoba, the company’s head of reinsurance, said in the statement. “To be able to address the growing need for insurance protection in a sustainable way, further price increases across all lines of business are clearly needed.” — Bloomberg