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The U.S. accounted for a higher proportion of global natural catastrophe losses than usual in 2012, due to a series of severe weather-related catastrophes, Munich Re is reporting. Last year, natural catastrophes caused US$160 billion in overall losses and US$65 billion in insured losses worldwide. Some 67 percent of overall losses and 90 percent of insured losses were attributable to the U.S. – the respective averages are 32 percent and 57 percent. The year’s highest insured loss was caused by Hurricane Sandy, with an estimated amount of around US$25 billion. 

Munich Re Board member Torsten Jeworrek stated: “The heavy losses caused by weather-related natural catastrophes in the U.S. showed that greater loss-prevention efforts are needed. It would certainly be possible to protect conurbations like New York better from the effects of storm surges. Such action would make economic sense and insurers could also reflect the reduced exposure in their pricing.” 

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