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Four weeks of severe weather in May affected the United States with aggregate insured losses exceeding USD 2.2 billion. Overall economic losses were at least USD3.5 billion, with large hail and damaging winds the primary driver of the thunderstorm related costs. And that was during a weak tornado season!

May’s headlines include:

  • Multiple outbreaks of severe weather lead to costly month for insurers in the United States.
  • Billion dollar flood events inundate Southeast Europe (Balkans) and China.
  • Wildfires damage or destroy hundreds of homes and structures in Texas and California.

The costliest stretch occurred during a five-day period which damaged parts of the Midwest, Plains, Rockies, Mid-Atlantic and the Northeast, including the major metropolitan areas of Chicago and Denver. Despite the losses, by the end of May U.S. tornado activity for the year remained in the bottom 25th percentile of all years dating to the early 1950s.

The full report is available at http://thoughtleadership.aonbenfield.com/Documents/20140605_if_may_global_recap.pdf