U.S. property and casualty insurers suffer $9 billion loss in 2001

U.S. property and casualty insurers reported a $9 billion loss in 2001, compared to a $27 billion loss reported in 2000, according to Weiss Rating, Inc. By year-end, claims surged to a record $381 billion, an increase of $175 billion (86%) over the $205 billion in claims reported in 2000. The loss, the first ever for the industry, reflects not only catastrophic losses from the Sept. 11 attacks, but also a general increase in claims across the majority of lines of business. Although the losses were very large, they were concentrated among 905 insurers (34% of the 2,653 companies analyzed). A Weiss Rating, Inc. report states, "These results will cause insurers to continue price increases in 2003, although they will probably not be as significant as 2001 and 2002. In addition, carriers will maintain a very conservative stance on what risks they insure and strong underwriting discipline will be paramount."

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