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AIG COVID losses pass $1 billion

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AIG says its full-year COVID-19 losses for 2020 came to $US1.1 billion ($1.42 billion) as the pandemic impacted business, particularly travel.

The general insurance division posted an underwriting loss of $US171 million ($220.6 million) in the fourth quarter, including $US545 million ($702.71 million) of catastrophe losses, up from $US411 million ($529.94 million) a year earlier.

The fourth-quarter catastrophe figure comprised $US367 million ($473.21 million) primarily related to Hurricanes Sally, Zeta, Laura and Delta, as well as $US178 million ($229.51 million) due to COVID-19.

CEO Brian Duperreault, who is transitioning into the role of Executive Chairman and is to be succeeded by Peter Zaffino, says the underlying general insurance business continues to improve, with a 1.9-point improvement in the accident year combined ratio, as adjusted, compared to 2019.

“We are effectively managing the impacts of COVID-19 and natural catastrophes and remain well capitalised in this environment of unprecedented uncertainty,” he said.

Fourth quarter general insurance gross written premium (GWP) declined 2% to $US7.14 billion ($9.21 billion) while the combined ratio widened to 102.8%, from 99.8% in the final quarter of 2019.