Munich Re eyes flat prices in January renewals

BADEN-BADEN, Germany Mon Oct 21, 2013 3:30am EDT

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BADEN-BADEN, Germany Oct 21 (Reuters) - Munich Re expects to hold prices steady on its portfolio of contracts with insurers when they are renewed on Jan. 1, Europe's biggest reinsurer said on Monday.

"Munich Re sees itself as well positioned for the forthcoming treaty renewal negotiations in reinsurance business and expects prices for business in its own portfolio to remain largely stable," it said in a statement.

Its comments came as annual negotiations between reinsurers and their insurance company clients got under way in the southern German resort of Baden-Baden.

"Special circumstances apply to the German market, where the high claim burden from natural hazard events in the current year will play a major role in the renewal discussions," it said, referring to flooding and hail storms over the summer that required insurers to pay out billions of euros in damage claims.

Munich Re renews about half of its 17 billion euro ($23.3 billion) global property and casualty book on Jan. 1.

Many observers have suggested reinsurance prices would be under pressure in 2014 from an inflow of capital from pension funds, which is increasing the supply of reinsurance available in the market.

($1 = 0.7302 euros) (Reporting by Jonathan Gould; Editing by Maria Sheahan)

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