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First half cat bill falls, less than half losses insured

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Global economic losses from all disasters fell to $US44 billion ($64.93 billion) in the first half of the year, Swiss Re’s preliminary estimates show, down 13% from the first half of 2018.

Natural catastrophes fell 30% to $US40 billion ($59.02 billion).

An estimated $US19 billion ($28.04 billion) of the total bill was borne by insurers. Several events, such as cyclones in Africa and India, occurred in areas with low insurance penetration and as a result only 42% of total losses were insured.

The highest losses came from thunderstorms, torrential rains and snowmelt in the US, Canada, Europe, Australia, China and Iran. Swiss Re estimates total economic losses from these events at $US32 billion ($47.23 billion), with about $US13 billion ($19.18 billion) insured.