Insured Losses in Germany from floods will range from €2 bn to €3 bn

Moody’s RMS estimates that insured losses in Germany from the Central Europe Floods will likely range from €2 bn to €3 bn.

Heavy rainfall between May 28 and June 3 caused significant flooding in central Europe, especially in Germany.

Southern Germany experienced intense rain from May 30 to June 3, resulting in widespread flash and river flooding.

Initial flooding affected smaller rivers in Baden-Württemberg and Bavaria. The Danube River also reached flood stage as water accumulated downstream.

Moody’s latest loss estimate includes insured property damage, spoiled contents, and business interruption across residential, commercial, industrial, agricultural, and automobile sectors.

Insured Losses in Germany from floods will range from €2 bn to €3 bn

This analysis, using Moody’s RMS Europe Inland Flood HD Models, also factors in post-event loss amplification, recent inflation trends, exposure growth, and increased insurance uptake.

Analysts noted the estimate excludes insured losses for non-modeled exposures like transport, utility infrastructure, or crops.

It primarily covers southern Germany, which is expected to bear the brunt of the losses. It does not include losses from Switzerland, Austria, Czechia, Hungary, and Italy, as contributions from these countries are minimal.

Potential losses from downstream flooding or renewed precipitation are also excluded.

Daniel Bernet, Moody’s Assistant Director, Model Product Management, compared this event to the central European floods of 2013. Both events occurred in late May, with May 2024 being one of the wettest months recorded in southern Germany.

Soils were fully saturated after the initial heavy rainfall on May 28 and May 30, the more prolonged rainfall associated with a typical Vb-type event then led to widespread flooding in southern Germany.

Daniel Bernet, Assistant Director, Model Product Management, Moody’s

“Even the insured losses from 2013 and the current events are in the same range when trending the 2013 losses to today.

In Baden-Württemberg, given the flood insurance take-up rate is as high as 94%, most of the residential losses will be covered. Unfortunately, this high level of coverage is not the case in Bavaria where the flood insurance take-up rate is 47%.

Similarly, properties will not be covered for direct ground-water intrusions, a frequently observed phenomenon during the 2013 event.

From a flood modeling perspective, the 2013 and 2024 events again highlight how important it is to appropriately capture key elements such as antecedent conditions, Vb-type events, cross-country correlations, flood defenses, and combined fluvial and pluvial flooding.

The technology and data used in providing this information are based on the scientific data, mathematical and empirical models, and encoded experience of scientists and specialists.

As with any model of physical systems, particularly those with low frequencies of occurrence and potentially high severity outcomes, the actual losses from catastrophic events may differ from the results of simulation analyses.

Nataly Kramer   by Nataly Kramer