Major hurricanes now once a decade — not once a century, top insurance firm says


Swiss Re‘s chief financial officer told CNBC Friday that he expects the occurrence of multiple, powerful hurricanes to become increasingly common over the coming years.

“Climate change is in fact warming not just the Earth but also the oceans and one of the reasons why the expectation of future hurricanes is so high is that last years’ three hurricanes together — the $135 billion of losses — are a one in 10 year event not a one in a 100 year event,” John Dacey, chief financial officer of Swiss Re, told CNBC’s Joumanna Bercetche on Friday.

“We see the possibility for a repetition of these kinds of losses in the foreseeable future,” he added.

The insurance industry is still reeling from its costliest year on record in 2017, following a series of major hurricanes, fires and earthquakes in North America.

More than half of the total insured losses last year were due to Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria — with each wrecking havoc in the U.S. and the Caribbean in the latter half of 2017. Earlier this year, Swiss Re warned more research into climate change and its impact on extreme weather events would be necessary.

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