U.S. December weather-related insurance payouts may top $2 billion: report

A partially submerged house is seen after several days of heavy rain led to flooding in Arnold, Missouri, December 30, 2015. REUTERS/Kate Munsch
A partially submerged house is seen after several days of heavy rain led to flooding in Arnold, Missouri, December 30, 2015. REUTERS/Kate Munsch

LONDON (Reuters) - Extreme weather in the United States during the last 10 days of December could bring insured losses for the month to more than $2 billion, reinsurance broker Aon Benfield said on Wednesday. At least 64 people were killed in the United States as a result of tornadoes, flooding, snowfall, hail and winds during that period, Aon Benfield said in its monthly global catastrophe report. Economic losses in the United States from natural disasters were likely to total more than $4 billion for the whole month, it added. Flooding is continuing, with Tennessee residents bracing for the rapidly rising Mississippi River to crest within days. But Aon said insurance payouts from the severe flooding may not be high. "The event is ongoing, but given under-insurance or a lack of any ... flood insurance across some of the hardest-hit areas in Missouri and Illinois, much of the flood loss is not expected to be covered by insurance," said Steve Bowen, author of the report. (Reporting by Carolyn Cohn; Editing by Mark Potter)