AIG bought a new $2bn aggregate catastrophe cover and a new international catastrophe treaty at 1 January as it followed through on a commitment to lay off more risk to the reinsurance market, The Insurance Insider can reveal.
The broad shape of the 1 January renewals is now clear. And although there is a bull case to be made around casualty and an uptick in elements of primary pricing, the outcome is broadly disappointing for a reinsurance market still disproportionately reliant on property to make money.
Reinsurers failed to achieve the sought-after magnitude of rate increases at the 1 January renewals, but they will benefit from an improved trading environment in the year ahead, according to Willis Re.
There are six complexly interlinked themes that can be used to tell the reinsurance sector's stories as we look back to 2017 and into 2018.
Global insurance M&A rose 16 percent last year to $57bn according to Willis Towers Watson (WTW) Securities.
JLT Re has bolstered an emerging consensus around the outcome of the 1 January renewals, with the broker's risk-adjusted property catastrophe reinsurance rate index rising by 4.8 percent.
Validus Re's first cat bond proved to be popular with investors, expanding by 23 percent over the course of marketing to reach $400mn.
Higher-attaching UK motor liability programmes experienced rate rises of as much as 100 percent at 1 January, as uncertainty about Ogden discount rate reforms made for a challenging renewal, according to Willis Re.
Rates on loss-hit catastrophe retro accounts surged as much as 30 percent at 1 January, according to Willis Re.
Aquiline's recent acquisition of Armour rounds off a year in which a number of corporations both inside and outside the legacy market made a bigger bet on run-off for the years ahead.
A flurry of deals at the end of last year took total cat bond lite issuance to $1.17bn for 2017, up over 400 percent from 2016's $212.81mn.
Dutch pension fund provider PGGM raised a further $260mn of securitised notes via its Leo Re vehicle just before Christmas, according to a Bermuda Stock Exchange (BSX) listing.
Reinsurers are reflecting on what has been a disappointing renewal season, with most business showing only modest rate increases for clients without losses.