The Friday Five: Week of December 2, 2019

by Jen Smoldt on December 6, 2019


If you care about what’s happening in the world of property and casualty (P&C), then this is the place to be. Each week, we serve up a bite-size roundup of the latest news, hot topics, and (admittedly subjective) tidbits to keep curious insurance professionals, like you, in-the-know.

Quote of the Week:

“New ways of thinking have always been hard, no matter the industry. Businesses begin with some sort of novel approach, but, as they grow, become much more about developing that approach to the fullest and optimizing the business built around it rather than about developing new insights.” -Paul Carroll, Editor-in-Chief, Insurance Thought Leadership

  1. Maximizing profitability while meeting clients’ needs… May require a “new view,” writes Paul Carroll of Insurance Thought Leadership. “In insurance, we have the inertia problem in spades. We think of ourselves as selling policies. Even our language locks us into thinking of ourselves as being in the product business...But customers don't long for policies…”
  2. Catastrophe risk is growing… Yet the principles of how insurers assess catastrophe risk and share information have not broadly changed in 30 years. "The time has come for the insurance industry to change its operating paradigm for catastrophe management,” writes Sean Ringsted of Chubb about the need for greater interoperability and sharing of data. Here’s what SpatialKey President, Bret Stone, has to say on the topic...
  3. 2019 was a landmark year for private flood insurance… The private flood industry was up 9% in 2018 and 71% since 2016, largely due to advancements in catastrophe modeling, technology, and data and analytics that have enabled insurers to better understand flood risk. Here’s a look back at why we predicted 2019 would be a big year for private flood insurers... 
  4. Ground control to Major Precipitation🌧️ Researchers have found that from 1978 to 2017, atmospheric rivers (concentrated lines of water vapor in the middle and lower atmospheric levels) have accounted for $42.6 billion in flood damage in 11 Western states — that’s roughly $1.1 billion in damage by atmospheric rivers every year, and scientists say it’s only going to get worse.
  5. “I told you so!” (If models could talk)… Early climate models (run before supercomputers) "were uncannily accurate” in projecting how much the world would warm due to greenhouse gases. Precipitation changes, however, especially at a regional level, are still extremely difficult for models to capture. “Temperature is easy, other climate variables like precipitation are a lot harder”...

Missed last week’s Friday Five? Check it out here.  

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Topics: private flood, open ecosystem, interoperability, catastrophe risk management

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