Primary insurers to bear the brunt of California wildfires
Primary insurers rather than reinsurers will bear the majority of losses incurred so far in the current California wildfires, according to Keefe, Bruyette & Woods (KBW) analysts.
Latest information from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) reports that the Carr wildfire has burned almost 95,000 acres, destroying an estimated 874 homes and commercial buildings, with another 175 structures damaged. The fire is now 17 percent contained vs. only 5 percent containment as of Sunday (July 29) morning, but still implying more losses to come, KBW noted.
Although it's too early for credible insured loss estimates, the Carr fire remains significantly smaller than the October 2017 Northern California wildfires that burned over 245,000 acres of land and destroyed more than 8,900 structures, and smaller than the December 2017 Southern California wildfires that burned over 305,000 acres and destroyed over 1,300 structures, KBW added. “At this point, we assume that primary insurers rather than reinsurers will bear the majority of losses incurred so far,” the analysts said.
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