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Insured Loss Estimates from Ian Keep Rising

According to a risk-modeling firm, Hurricane Ian will cost private US insurers $63 billion in claims and result in the largest storm-related losses in Florida history. Karen Clark & Co. said in a report Friday that the forecast includes losses to residential, commercial, and industrial properties, as well as automobiles. Previous estimates cited by industry analysts put damages in the $30-$40 billion range. Ian made landfall in Florida on Wednesday, bringing powerful gales and a wall of water that inundated parts of the state. On its way up the East Coast, it pounded South Carolina with strong winds and a deadly storm surge on Friday. In its report, Karen Clark wrote, "In nominal dollars, Hurricane Ian will be the largest hurricane loss in Florida history." "The total economic damage, including uninsured properties, infrastructure damage, and other cleanup and recovery costs, will be well over $100 billion."
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Lemonade Goes Abroad to the UK

Lemonade, an insurance company powered by artificial intelligence and social impact, has launched in the United Kingdom. Residents in the United Kingdom can now obtain Lemonade Contents insurance instantly, from anywhere, on any device, and file claims and receive payment in seconds. “We believe the millions of local renters will appreciate what Lemonade has to offer. After all, who doesn’t want instant, transparent, personalized, and mission-driven insurance?” Lemonade's launch today follows previous launches in France, Germany, and the Netherlands. Lemonade was founded in 2015 and launched its flagship renters insurance in the United States in 2016, where it is now ranked as one of the market's top renters insurance products. Lemonade brings the same instantaneous and delightful experience to UK residents with today's launch. Customers can get a quote, buy contents insurance, file a claim, and get paid all in a matter of seconds. Lemonade's business model incorporates social impact as a Public Benefit Corporation and Certified B-Corp. The company donates leftover premiums to non-profit organizations chosen by its customers through its Giveback program, which supports causes such as equality, climate change, and poverty. Lemonade, which has a Defaqto 5 Star Rating, is now available to residents in the UK for as little as £4 per month. Lemonade's Contents insurance includes global coverage for individual personal items worth up to £2,000 each, total coverage of up to £100,000, and no cancellation fees. Add-on coverage is also available for those who want additional protection against theft and loss, accidental damage to mobile devices, and expert assistance through legal protection. “Insurance as we know it hails from the UK, as do I. So both professionally and personally bringing Lemonade to the UK is a homecoming of sorts,” said Daniel Schreiber, Lemonade co-CEO and co-founder. “We believe the millions of local renters will appreciate what Lemonade has to offer. After all, who doesn’t want instant, transparent, personalized, and mission-driven insurance?” Lemonade is entering the UK market through a long-term strategic partnership with Aviva, a leading UK insurer. “We’re excited to be appointed as the long-term partner for Lemonade in the UK. We share a common outlook for how digital, AI and data can transform customer experiences, and the role insurers can play in building stronger communities,” said Adam Winslow, CEO of Aviva UK & Ireland General Insurance. “By joining forces we can ensure compelling propositions reach a broader range of customers, including renters, an under-served yet growing segment of the UK insurance market. In our 325 year history we have adapted and thrived in a changing world and our partnership with Lemonade is a marker of our intent to continue just this.” “Pairing Lemonade’s strengths with Aviva's promises to deliver an insurance that is digitally native, yet rooted in the birth of modern statistics in the 1700s. It’s the best of both worlds, giving people a refreshing experience backed by a company they’ve known and trusted for years,” added Schreiber. Lemonade Insurance NV is governed by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and is subject to limited supervision by the Prudential Regulatory Authority (PRA) in the United Kingdom. Residents in the United Kingdom can now purchase a new policy via the Lemonade app or online at lemonade.com/uk. About Lemonade Lemonade offers renters, homeowners, car, pet, and life insurance. Powered by artificial intelligence and social impact, Lemonade’s full stack insurance carriers in the US and the EU replace brokers and bureaucracy with bots and machine learning, aiming for zero paperwork and instant everything. A Certified B-Corp, Lemonade gives unused premiums to nonprofits selected by its community, during its annual Giveback. Lemonade is currently available in the United States, Germany, the Netherlands, France, and the UK, and continues to expand globally.
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McDonald’s Wins First Round in $1 Billion Discrimination Lawsuit by Former Black Franchise Owners

McDonald's Corp. has temporarily resisted a lawsuit filed by 52 Black former franchise owners who claim the fast-food company set them up for failure by directing them to crime-ridden, low-income areas. In a written order last week, a federal judge in Chicago dismissed the 2020 lawsuit, but gave the plaintiffs until Oct. 21 to file an amended complaint. The judge did not explain why the case was dismissed. Despite its public commitment to diversity and Black entrepreneurship, the plaintiffs claim McDonald's has not provided profitable restaurant locations and growth opportunities to Black franchisees on the same terms as white franchisees. They are seeking damages of up to $1 billion. McDonald's has denied wrongdoing and stated that, while it may make recommendations for store locations, franchisees make the final decisions. According to a company spokesperson, the case was dismissed "because the plaintiffs had no facts to support their arguments." "Discrimination has no place at McDonald's, and we remain committed to taking action to attract and support franchisees who reflect the diverse communities we serve," the company stated.
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Homeowners Segment Well Capitalized but Weather Events Pose Significant Uncertainty: AM Best

The homeowners insurance segment in the United States has generated operating profits in three of the last five years, with a net profit of nearly $2.5 billion expected in 2021. However, according to a new AM Best report, the segment could face challenges, with Hurricane Ian affecting 2022 results. “U.S. Homeowners Line Well Capitalized but Weather Events Pose Significant Uncertainty” Despite above-average catastrophe activity in 2021 and challenging market conditions, the segment's combined ratio improved by nearly four points to 103.8 in 2022, according to AM Best's Market Segment Report, "U.S. Homeowners Line Well Capitalized but Weather Events Pose Significant Uncertainty." Growth in net premiums earned outpaced growth in loss and LAE expenses, driving the improvement; catastrophes remain the primary driver of underwriting volatility in the line. “Pricing sophistication, exposure management and risk selection has benefited profitability among the top writers, and insurers have taken prudent underwriting actions and devoted significant resources to limit the impact of volatile weather patterns on results,” said Maurice Thomas, senior financial analyst, AM Best. According to the report, losses from so-called secondary perils have been growing at a faster rate than losses from primary perils. Because these perils have not been modeled as long or as thoroughly as primary perils, reinsurers have either been conservative in their capital requirements or demanded higher returns, resulting in pricing increases. Prior to Hurricane Ian, the most expensive 2022 event, with $2.2 billion in damage, was an April tornado outbreak across the Southern United States. AM Best maintains a stable outlook on the homeowners insurance market segment in the United States, citing strong risk-adjusted capitalization for most insurers, disciplined underwriting, and increased technology use. However, the report states that inflation and supply chain disruptions, as well as higher reinsurance pricing, continue to be headwinds. All of these issues are most visible in Florida's property insurance market, where four Florida-based property insurers and a Louisiana-based company that wrote property business in the state have been declared insolvent since late February 2022; now the market must contend with a major hurricane. “The reinsurance market has become more selective in taking on Florida exposures due to local market forces and higher exposure levels, creating an existential challenge for many of the primary carriers there that depend on reinsurance,” said David Blades, associate director, industry research and analytics, AM Best. “At the same time, the growing number of wildfires across the United States, as well as perils such as convective storms in the Midwest, have only deepened this conservatism among reinsurers.” To access the full copy of this market segment report, please visit http://www3.ambest.com/bestweek/purchase.asp?record_code=324437.
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