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Q1 cat bond issuance up 35% YOY, says PCS

Insurers and reinsurers issued about $2 billion in catastrophebonds in the first quarter, an increase of 35% compared to the year-ago period,Property Claim Services said in its quarterly catastrophe bond report, citing datafrom the Artemis Deal Directory.

The quarter saw nine catastrophe bond transactions completed,up from seven during the first quarter of 2015, while average transaction size edgedup 5%.

All nine sponsors had prior experience in the catastrophe bondmarket, suggesting that global risk and capital management strategies of some haveincorporated the use of the bonds, according to the report.The PCS report also noted that while the transactions in the first quarter may havelargely covered traditional ground, market discussions point to an increasing mandatefor catastrophe bonds and for insurance-linked securities, and that the market isactively looking to expand such securities' coverage.

Seven of the nine catastrophe bonds completed in the quarterhad exposure to North America, while the other two focused on Japan, according tothe report.