Natural catastrophe losses hit $40 bln in H1 -Swiss Re study

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Flames rise as a wildfire burns in the village of Galatsona, on the island of Evia, Greece, August 9, 2021. REUTERS/Nicolas Economou

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ZURICH, Aug 12 (Reuters) - A deep winter freeze, hailstorms and wildfires led to natural catastrophe losses of $40 billion in the first half of 2021, Swiss Re Institute's (SRENH.S) preliminary estimates showed on Thursday.

This is above the previous 10-year average of $33 billion and the second highest on record for a first half after that of 2011, when earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand pushed the six-month total to $104 billion.

Man-made disasters triggered another $2 billion of insured losses in the first half, it estimated, less than usual and likely reflecting COVID-19 restrictions.

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Reporting by Michael Shields; editing by Jason Neely

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