Amlin's NZ quake bill $83m more than expected

Amlin, the biggest Lloyd's of London insurer by market value, has reported higher prices across its main markets and said earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand this year could cost it $83m more than previously thought.

Amlin, which issued a profit warning in August due to bigger than expected catastrophe claims, said prices rose by an average of 0.9 per cent as customers renewed their policies in the first 10 months of 2011, after a decrease of 1.9 percent in the same period last year.

The company also said estimated claims from the March 11 Japanese earthquake and tsunami had risen to $206 million from its previous estimate of $156 million, while its projected exposure to the quake that struck New Zealand in February had climbed to $338 million from $305 million.

"While this year's performance has been impacted by an exceptionally high level and frequency of catastrophe events, the overall outlook for underwriting is improving," chief executive Charles Philipps said in a statement.