Lloyd’s of London has reported a loss of £516 million following the largest catastrophe claims year on record.
The loss is the second biggest in the insurance market’s 324 year history.
Lloyd’s incurred total net claims of £12.9 billion, including £4.6 billion of catastrophe claims.
In 2011, Queensland in Australia was devastated by Cyclone Yasi, Christchurch rocked by further earthquakes and Japan by an earthquake and tsunami.
Some 1,600 tornadoes battered US states in the South and Midwest and Hurricane Irene wreaked havoc on businesses and communities.
As the year ended, floods in Thailand caused further devastation.
Chief executive Richard Ward said in a statement: “Make no mistake, 2011 was a difficult year for the insurance industry.
“Given the scale of the claims, a loss is unsurprising.”
But he added that despite the loss, Lloyd’s financial strength had been maintained.
By comparison, the market recorded a profit of £2.2 billion in 2010.
The loss reflects the aggregate financial performance of the 80 insurance syndicates that make up Lloyd's market.
The 2011 deficit is second only to the £3.11 billion loss it reported following the September 11 terrorist attacks in New York a decade earlier.
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