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Impact Forecasting estimates US economic losses from March weather events at $3.5B

Total economic losses sustained to property, infrastructure andagriculture from the convective storm and flood damage across the U.S. during themonth of March were anticipated to approach $3.5 billion, according to the latestmonthly Global Catastrophe Recap report from Aon Benfield's Impact Forecasting.

Insured losses incurred by public and private insurance entitieswere tentatively estimated at $2.0 billion, according to the report. Seven severeU.S. convective storm events impacted nearly every part of the country during themonth. The Storm Prediction Center recorded more than 1,000 individual reports oftornadoes, damaging straight-line winds and hail.

Impact Forecasting reported that Texas was among the hardest-hitstates. The Insurance Council of Texas estimated insured losses for the state atmore than $1.1 billion, following more than 125,000 home and auto claim filingsover several weeks.

A winter storm in southern Canada brought accumulating snow,ice and freezing rain to portions of Ontario and Quebec, causing widespread damage.Total economic losses were estimated to approach C$130 million, or US$100 million,while insurers anticipated losses well into the tens of millions of dollars.

In Asia, the most damaging severe thunderstorm and flood eventin at least a decade impacted the United Arab Emirates and Oman. The local insuranceindustry in UAE anticipated claims to reach $140 million, with total economic lossesforecast to be well into the hundreds of millions of dollars. The central and easternsections of China were impacted by thunderstorm and heavy rain events, damagingthousands of homes and other structures and thousands of acres of cropland. TheMinistry of Civil Affairs reported aggregated economic losses of $570 million. Erraticrainfall across multiple sections of India led to intensifying drought conditionsand caused major crop damage. The National Disaster Relief Fund recently allocated$600 million for seven hard-hit states: Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Assam,Andhra Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Nagaland.

In northern Europe, windstorm Jeanne caused hurricane-force windsand flooding, killing at least one person. U.K. and Scandinavia were particularlyimpacted by the storm. Total economic and insured losses are expected to exceed$100 million.

Aon Benfield is the global reinsurance intermediary and capitaladviser of Aon Plc.