Insurance & Technology - Buzzwords can gain momentum quickly in IT, and the latest technology buzz is around "Big Data." Netflix’s Jeremy Edberg, in an article for InformationWeek (a UBM TechWeb brand), recently defined big data as "the tools and processes of managing and utilizing large datasets." But for insurers looking to build smarter claims organizations, the tools are much more important than the size of the datasets themselves, experts say. "There really is a ton of data in insurance," points out Aaron Fidler, VP at Applied Predictive Technologies, a Washington, D.C.-based provider of analytics software and consulting services.
Thursday, March 29, 2012
 
Insurance Journal - Although everyone is more or less aware that 2011 was a very bad year for losses from natural catastrophes, the figures compiled by Swiss Re evince just how bad they actually were. In its latest sigma study the reinsurer points out that the $370 billion in economic losses were the highest in history. 2011 also holds the record for the highest insured earthquake losses — from the Japanese earthquake and tsunami — at $49 billion. Just for good measure the series of floods that hit Thailand set a new record for insured flood losses at $12 billion.
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
 
Business Insurance - After enduring the large catastrophe losses, lower investment income and declining reserve margins that defined 2011, the property/casualty insurance industry is poised for growth in 2012, according to a report issued Thursday by New York-based Moody’s Investors Service Inc. The report, “U.S. P&C Insurers’ Earnings Down in 2011, but Pricing Gains Traction,” says that in spite of the challenges, the industry retains strong credit fundamentals.
Friday, March 23, 2012
 
Insurance Journal - United Fire Group Inc., headquartered in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, announced that it expects its first-quarter results through March to include pre-tax catastrophe losses, net of reinsurance, of approximately $13 million to $16 million. These losses are the result of several powerful storms that spawned multiple tornadoes and tore through Midwestern and Southeastern states in the last week of February, including Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and Alabama.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
 
wxii12.com - Six people, including two firefighters, were treated after a Tuesday afternoon fire in the Wilkes County town of Ronda. The blaze happened at Precision Fibers at 145 Factory Street. Wilkes County EMS Director Greg Hendren said an initial call reported that an explosion had occurred. Five people -- three plant employees and two firefighters -- were taken to Hugh Chatham Memorial Hospital. Those patients were expected to be released later Tuesday, according to a statement from the hospital.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
 
q13fox.com - A Boeing worker was seriously injured when he became trapped between the wing flaps and spoiler of a 747 jumbo jet Monday night. The incident happened about 7:30 p.m. at the aircraft manufacturer’s Everett plant. Everett Fire Department spokesperson Rick Robinson said Boeing rescuers had to extricate the unidentified employee from the wing. “The man had been pinned between the spoiler and flap/wing assembly on a 747 aircraft,” Robinson said. “
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
 
KENS5.com - A wind event battered the United States Post Office early Tuesday morning, leaving behind shattered glass, a toppled delivery truck and damage near the rear of the facility. Joe Lugo, a contracted mail carrier, said he parked his truck in the post office’s parking lot in the 10400 block of Perrin Beitel after 1 a.m. Although things seemed to get quiet, Lugo said he got out his vehicle just in time. "Soon as I walked in the door I could hear a whistling sound," he said.
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
 
Insurance Networking News - If 2012 is anything like 2011 in the amount of storms and resulting losses, property/casualty insurers may shrink in number, according to a new Guy Carpenter study. Tornado activity this year so far is already high with 272 tornadoes, according to EQECAT. Last year, deadly twisters took the lives of at least 339 people, as more than 160 tornados ripped across seven states. “If there are continued losses due to storms, the required payouts could deplete the capital base of insurers forcing them to merge or be acquired in order to stay in business,” said Chris Ezbiansky, head of mergers and acquisitions at Guy Carpenter (GC) Capital’s Advisory Americas.
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
 
Sunshine State News - The president of a Panhandle construction company was arrested for falsifying payroll information to avoid workers’ compensation premiums, following an investigation by the state Department of Financial Services’ Division of Insurance Fraud. Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater announced the arrest of Randall Morton Seltzer, 43, president of Navarre Industries Inc.
Monday, March 19, 2012
 
CNN US - Seven people were injured Thursday when heavy rains caused a partial roof collapse at a Barbourville, Kentucky, business, officials said. Initial reports from the scene were that the drainage system at Tru-Seal Manufacturing was clogged and caused water to pool on the roof, causing a partial collapse, said Kentucky Emergency Management spokesman Buddy Rogers. Three people were taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, Rogers said. Several others walked over to the hospital on their own with minor injuries, he said.
Friday, March 16, 2012
 
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