Snow, ice and some of the most frigid temperatures in decades in the southern United States will produce insured losses “in the billions of dollars,” Moody’s said in new commentary released on Feb. 17.
Texas was particularly affected by the Feb. 15 storm, and vulnerable insurers there who do the most homeowners business include State Farm, Allstate, USAA, Farmers and Liberty Mutual. Top commercial property insurers who are the most exposed in Texas include Liberty Mutual, Travelers, Texas Windstorm, Chubb and AIG, according to data cited by Moody’s.
Moody’s predicts massive insured losses in claims from homeowners, commercial property and auto lines due to snow, ice and historically frigid temperatures in Texas and elsewhere in the southern U.S. As the event just happened, detailed dollar amounts will take some time to calculate.
Those storms, Moody’s noted, have led to loss of life, property damage and massive power outages. Causes of property damage in the storm include snow, flooding, and water damage from frozen and broken pipes.
Moody’s noted that homeowners and commercial property insurance policies don’t typically cover losses from natural floods, but insurers typically cover floods stemming from broken pipes inside insured buildings.
Moody’s expects insurers with high homeowners premiums in Texas to face larger losses, even as the storm (Winter Storm Uri) also led to damaging tornadoes in North Carolina and Alabama.
Overall the storm’s path placed 39 of 48 continental U.S. states to fall under some sort of winter weather advisory or storm alert, according to AIR Worldwide. That’s the largest region to fall under w winter storm warning since 2005, according to the Verisk-owned firm.
Source: Moody’s, AIR Worldwide