MARINE COULD COST
Insurance carriers are likely to make a slight loss in underwriting terms on their marine hull accounts in 2006, but there could be worse to come, according to the International Union of Marine Insurance. Figures presented to the IUMI conference in Copenhagen this week from research it has commissioned reflected increased claims severity. Record numbers of ships are helping to move much of global trade, and world seaborne trade has increased by 45 percent since 1996. Underwriters will also need to factor the shortage of qualified crew and rising repair costs.
Demand for oil and gas resources is giving rise to certain technical and operational risks for energy companies and their insurers, according to attendees at the 133rd meeting of International Union of Marine Insurance in Copenhagen. With the price of oil at record highs, the energy sector is becoming "overheated," according to Dominick Hoare, chairman of IUMI's Energy and Offshore Committee. Energy companies are using a lot of equipment that has not been utilized before, while a lot of old equipment remains in use. Technical change, on the other hand, could bring its own risk.
CARRIERS SLOW TO ACT
U.K. fund manager F&C Asset Management released a September report that charged that some insurers have been slow to act on climate change and need to develop strategies to deal with the effect of global warming. Insurers are at risk of higher payouts due to increasing numbers of natural catastrophes, yet many firms have not factored in the probability of more hurricanes, storms and floods due to climate change into their risk pricing, the report said. Traditionally, insurers have relied on data on what they have paid out in the past to work out how much they should charge in the future. But climate change means that the past is increasingly an unreliable guide to the future, F&C said.
ZURICH SHARPENS FOCUS
Zurich, a large property/casualty carrier, is targeting the needs of middle-market technology customers by providing a range of coverages designed specifically for them, the carrier has announced. Zurich's focus is not on end-users but on the creators and builders of technology products, like those companies in electronics manufacturing, information technology, digital and electronic communications, factory automation and medical technology. Products that have been honed for middle-market firms include its Property Portfolio Protection, or P3, form and coverages for errors and omissions, as well as standard coverages for general liability, business auto, umbrella and workers' compensation.
EXPLOSION IN IT
IT risk management is no longer strictly about mitigating the negative threats surrounding information technology but about incorporating IT into an organization's overall risk program, according to a study. Today's new approaches to risk management are delivering strategic corporate benefits by tying once disparate IT initiatives into a unified and integrated program that helps organizations achieve business objectives. The study, released by Enterprise Management Associates, is titled "Governance, Risk, Compliance and Beyond: The Emergence off Strategic IT Risk Management."
--Compiled by staff from news and wire reports.
October 15, 2007
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