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Disasters caused $100 billion in insured losses in 2023, Swiss Re says

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Earthquakes in Turkey and Syria, wildfires in Hawaii and other natural catastrophes have caused an estimated $100 billion in insured losses so far in 2023, down from the previous year but still well above normal, Swiss Re estimated on Thursday.

The tally, which compares with $133 billion in 2022 and a 10-year average of $89 billion a year, is one of the first estimates by a major insurer for the year.

Insurers have been raising the rates they charge as a result of increasing disasters, and in some places they have stopped providing coverage.

Swiss Re said that insured losses from severe thunderstorms were a record $60 billion, with big losses in the United States and in Europe.

Total economic losses from natural catastrophes, including those that are not insured, were an estimated $260 billion in 2023, down from $286 billion a year earlier but above the 10-year average of $223 billion.

Munich Re is due to release its annual catastrophe report in January.

(Reporting by Tom Sims and Paul Arnold, Editing by Linda Pasquini)