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EQECAT estimates Kyrill losses up to $6.48 billion


OAKLAND, Calif.--Windstorm Kyrill caused an estimated €2.5 billion to €5 billion ($3.24 billion to $6.48 billion) of insured damage in Western Europe last week, with properties in Germany sustaining the largest portion of the loss, according to risk modeler EQECAT Inc.

EQECAT's estimate is comparable to the loss that modeling company Risk Management Solutions Inc. has estimated: €3 billion to €5 billion ($3.89 billion to $6.48 billion). However, modeler AIR Worldwide Corp. on Wednesday issued a larger and broader loss range of €4 billion to €8 billion ($5.19 billion to $7.78 billion).

Kyrill, the most damaging storm that has hit Europe in several years, developed Jan. 17 in the mid-Atlantic and caused widespread damage across Germany and the United Kingdom, as well as Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands and Poland the following day.

Winds of up to 200 kph (124 mph) lashed Europe, bringing railways in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Germany to a virtual standstill and disrupting Rotterdam's port, Europe's biggest, where the storm caused an oil spill at a terminal.

EQECAT said its storm estimate constitutes a European market loss with a seven- to 10-year recurrence level.

But credit rating company Fitch Ratings has said Kyrill should have a limited rating impact on European insurers, because expected insurance claims likely will not threaten insurers' financial strength.