How insurers can gain a Twister-like understanding of tornado risk this season

At a glance:

  • A slew of tornadoes hit the Northeast this season causing massive damage. While insured losses are still being tallied, the twisters spun off from a chain of severe convective storms (SCS) that brought with them straight-line wind, hail, heavy rain, and flooding from Florida to New York.
  • Annual insured losses from severe convective storms are expected to approach $25 billion—that’s higher than hurricane and earthquake combined, according to new research from Karen Clark & Company.
Read on to learn what insurers can do to better assess and protect themselves, and insureds, from tornado risk this season.

Colorado’s costliest hailstorm (and natural catastrophe) one year later

 

Exactly one year ago today, as people were flooding out of their downtown Denver offices and beginning their commutes home, the costliest natural catastrophe in Colorado’s state history began wreaking havoc on the Denver metro area. And, it couldn’t have come at a worse time as hundreds of thousands of people hit the highway only to be pummeled by golf ball and baseball-sized hailstones. 

The event resulted in insured losses exceeding $2.2 billion according to NOAA, backing up claims professionals and auto body shops while causing massive business interruption costs.

3 ways to speed the property underwriting quote process

An excerpt from our latest eBook: click here to download the full version.

Last year’s record insured losses, $144 billion globally according to Swiss Re, have proven to be a catalyst for reinvigorating P&C insurers’ focus on driving efficiencies in the commercial underwriting process—ideally for minimal cost and disruption.

One of the key issues emerging is a gap between the wealth of information that is now abundant and insurers’ ability to process all that information—there’s both a deficiency in speed to information and the ability to harness its value. This deluge of data, in particular natural hazard risk data, is hindering the performance of property underwriters. But it doesn’t have to.

Q&A with IHS Markit, global terrorism & political risk data provider 

 

Between September 2016 and August 2017, 25,588* terrorism and political violence attacks occurred around the globe. The sheer volume of attacks warrants insurers to think differently about how they assess and manage this evolving risk. SpatialKey is collaborating with IHS Markit, the global authority on political violence and terrorism, to integrate their political violence risk index data into our platform—giving insurers a single system to assess, manage, and select terrorism and political risk.

We caught up with Michael Simms, Executive Director, Country Risk at IHS Markit, to gather more insight on IHS Markit’s data and how insurers can build confidence in their terrorism, country risk, and political risk selection and pricing.

Q&A with Swiss Re, global reinsurer & multi-peril hazard data provider 

 

Recently, SpatialKey partnered with leading global reinsurer, Swiss Re, to offer insurers access to multi-peril hazard data through SpatialKey’s proprietary underwriting solution. This collaboration integrates Swiss Re’s CatNet® hazard data directly into SpatialKey, providing insurers with access to more than 10 hazards worldwide.

In this interview, we catch up with Peter Hausmann, Head of Nat Cat and Engineering Solutions at Swiss Re, where we talk about Cat models, climate change, how insurers can help close the protection gap, and more. This is a must-read interview for insurers underwriting natural catastrophe risks globally.

Women's History Month: Why it matters to InsurTech

SpatialKey's women discuss how their work is making a difference for insurers, and what it's like to be a woman in tech...

Women are strong in insurance, making up a large percentage of the workforce (from 45-85 percent depending on the profession). Yet despite this strength, women like Inga Beale and Karen Clark comprise only 8 percent of named executive officer positions and 17 percent of board seats. What about women in the tech industry? As an InsurTech company, we thought Women’s History Month would be a good time to take a closer look.

Bridging the gap: Why data is a problem...and an opportunity

At industry events I generally come away invigorated by my conversations with clients and prospects. This year, however, the energy has been a bit different. That energy has had more urgency and emotion behind it. It’s clear the unprecedented events of 2017 took a toll on people, and there’s a compelling need to do something about it (especially with the 2018 hurricane season just around the corner). 

Q&A with HazardHub, leading hazard data provider for property underwriting 

HazardHub may be a newer name on the data scene, but with 24+ hazard datasets and risk information in shapefiles and APIs, these experienced data scientists are pros at modeling volatile perils like flood, storm surge, wildfire, earthquake, and more. Recently, SpatialKey caught up with John Siegman, founding partner at HazardHub, to talk through the power of hazard data for insurers. Here’s what he had to say about how their data is helping insurers better select and manage risk:

3 lessons insurers can learn from Elon Musk’s Falcon Heavy launch 

At our most recent company retreat, SpatialKey Chief Product Officer, Doug McCune, shared with us his vision for the future of SpatialKey. As a jumping off point, he talked at length about Elon Musk’s Falcon Heavy space launch and the number of iterations, failed attempts, tweaks, and tests that went into making it just right (and ultimately, successful!). Doug inspired all of us to think deeper about what companies like ours can learn from the Falcon Heavy launch. Turns out, there’s quite a bit! From failing fast to breaking up a major initiative into smaller, more achievable goals, here’s how SpatialKey is using Elon Musk’s Falcon Heavy launch as a template for success, and how you can too.

Underwriters: create competitive advantage with advanced data & analytics

At a glance:

  • New external data sources are enabling underwriters to better understand potential risk and create opportunity.
  • Insurers can improve combined ratios by 16-21 points using insurance analytics to more accurately assess risk in property underwriting.
  • Underwriters need to leverage innovations in data and analytics to build healthier portfolios and differentiate in the market, which means adapting their systems to keep pace with the latest science and technology.

As an underwriter, you’re already data driven. But, how data informed are you? To effectively compete, insurers—and underwriters in particular—will need new and innovative sources of external data, alongside advanced analytics, to inform underwriting strategy and put that strategy into practice at the point of sale.  

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