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Global economy suffers worst April natural disaster losses for five years, according to Aon catastrophe report
Earthquakes, convective storms and flooding contributed to worldwide devastation

CHICAGO, May 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Impact Forecasting, Aon Benfield's catastrophe model development team, today launches the latest edition of its monthly Global Catastrophe Recap report, which evaluates the impact of the natural disaster events that occurred worldwide during April 2016. Aon Benfield is the global reinsurance intermediary and capital advisor of Aon plc (NYSE:AON).

The report reveals that two major earthquakes struck southern Japan during the month, causing massive devastation and killing at least 66 people, with more than 4,000 others injured. Total economic losses, including physical damage to residential and commercial structures, vehicles and infrastructure, and business interruption, were expected to exceed JPY1.12 trillion (USD10 billion).

The General Insurance Association of Japan reported that nearly 70,000 non-life claims had been filed, as total insured losses were expected to breach JPY225 billion (USD2.0 billion).

Meanwhile, a major magnitude-7.8 earthquake struck Ecuador's northwest coast on April 16, killing at least 660 people and injuring more than 17,638 others. According to government figures, the total economic cost for the damage and reconstruction was expected to be above USD3.0 billion. Given low insurance penetration levels, the insured loss was set to be a fraction of the overall financial cost.

Steve Bowen, Director at Impact Forecasting, said: "The global footprint of natural disaster losses in April was significant. Between major events such as the Kumamoto earthquake, the severe convective storms and flooding in the United States, and flooded agriculture in Argentina, economic and insured losses are poised to make this the costliest April since 2011. The large differential between the economic and insured losses is yet another reminder of how much opportunity exists for the insurance industry to help engage with governments, communities and businesses around the world to provide the risk expertise that can help mitigate the effects of natural disasters."

Natural hazard events to have occurred elsewhere during April include:

  • Five outbreaks of severe convective storms impacted the United States, causing total aggregated economic losses estimated to exceed USD4.0 billion, and insurance losses beyond USD3.0 billion.
  • Excessive rains led to considerable flooding across Argentina, with the provinces of Entre Rios, Corrientes, Santa Fe, Chaco, Formosa, and Santiago del Estero and Uruguay sustaining the worst damage. Total economic losses to agriculture alone were estimated at ARS18.6 billion (USD1.3 billion).
  • A prodigious U.S. rainfall event caused major flash flooding in the greater Houston metro region, resulting in total economic losses expected to exceed USD1.0 billion.
  • Major flood events were recorded in Chile, China, Ecuador, Uruguay, Haiti, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, Uganda, Angola, Somalia, Ethiopia, India, and Afghanistan.
  • The combination of heavy rainfall from two tropical disturbances and Tropical Cyclone Zena led to flooding across several islands of the Fiji archipelago, killing two people.
  • An unseasonably intense heatwave killed at least 300 people in India, with the states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh noting temperatures above 44°C (111°F).

To view the full Impact Forecasting April 2016 Global Catastrophe Recap report, please follow the link:

http://aon.io/1q16IXe

Along with the report, users can access current and historical natural catastrophe data and event analysis on Impact Forecasting's Catastrophe Insight website, which is updated bi-monthly as new data become available:

www.aonbenfield.com/catastropheinsight

Further information

For further information please contact the Aon Benfield PR team: Andrew Wragg (+44 207 522 8183 / 07595 217168) David Bogg or Alexandra Lewis

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Aon plc (http://www.aon.com) is a leading global provider of risk management, insurance brokerage and reinsurance brokerage, and human resources solutions and outsourcing services. Through its more than 72,000 colleagues worldwide, Aon unites to empower results for clients in over 120 countries via innovative risk and people solutions. For further information on our capabilities and to learn how we empower results for clients, please visit: http://aon.mediaroom.com.

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