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April 10 (Reuters) - (The following statement was released by the rating agency)
Fitch Ratings has published an initial Dashboard Report on Property/Casualty (Re)Insurers' Asbestos Liability.
The Asbestos Liability Dashboard highlights industry asbestos reserves. Fitch estimates industry asbestos reserves to be deficient by $2 billion ? $9 billion at year-end 2013, based on estimated ultimate industry losses of $85 billion, total paid losses of $53 billion and current reserves totaling $23 billion. The industry 2013 survival ratio was 10.2x versus Fitch's target of 11x - 14x.
Fitch anticipates that asbestos-related losses will continue to bleed through (re)insurers' earnings, but will not generate severe capital shocks that provoke negative rating actions.
The report includes detail on survival ratios at yearend 2013 for 15 insurers with the most prominent asbestos exposures.
The 'Asbestos Liability Dashboard' is available on Fitch's website at 'www.fitchratings.com' or by clicking on the link.
Link to Fitch Ratings' Report: 2014 U.S. Asbestos Liability Dashboard