Berenberg sees $2-3 billion reinsurance losses from European floods

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LONDON (Reuters) -Reinsurance losses from the recent European floods are likely to total $2-3 billion, Berenberg analysts said on Monday.

Flooding has devastated parts of Western Europe since last Wednesday, with the German states of Rhineland Palatinate and North Rhine-Westphalia, as well as parts of Belgium, among the worst hit.

“The European floods are estimated to have cost the reinsurance industry several billions of dollars – we estimate between $2-3 billion,” Berenberg said in a client note.

Berenberg said major European firms Allianz (DE:), AXA, Generali (MI:) and Zurich were likely among the insurers facing the biggest claims from the disaster.

Allianz would likely face claims of 200-300 million euros million euros ($169.42-$254.13 million), AXA of 100-120 million euros, Generali of 200-250 million euros and Zurich of $140 million, Berenberg said.

Overall losses would likely greatly exceed insured losses, Berenberg said, with only around 45% of buildings in Germany insured against flood and heavy rain. In Belgium, such policies were standard so insurance coverage for the flooding was likely to be higher, the bank added.

($1 = 1.1805 euros)

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