Allstate Acts to Cut Claims Risk: The nation’s largest home and car insurer plans to reorganize its Florida business to reduce its potential claims losses from a single catastrophe to about $1 billion. The move, combined with a plan to reduce potential earthquake losses in California, should eliminate “the threat of the big one,” Merrill Lynch & Co. analyst Michael Frinquelli said. The move comes almost four years after Hurricane Andrew struck South Florida, leaving Northbrook, Ill.-based Allstate Corp. with a record $1.5 billion in claims losses. About 137,000 policies will be shifted to Clarendon National Insurance Co. of Newark, N.J. A new Florida subsidiary will handle Allstate’s remaining 670,000 Florida customers. Allstate also has taken steps to cut its potential claims losses in California by endorsing a plan to change the way the insurance industry covers earthquakes in the state.
Times Staff and Wire Reports