Hannover Re, Talanx warn on profit after hurricanes, Mexico quake

BERLIN, Sept 21 (Reuters) – German reinsurer Hannover Re and its parent Talanx warned on Thursday they may miss their 2017 profit targets due to claims from a series of hurricanes and an earthquake in Mexico.

Insurers and reinsurers are counting the cost of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, which hit Texas, the Caribbean and Florida’s Gulf Coast in late August and early September, causing tens of billions of dollars in damage.

They have been closely followed by Mexico’s most deadly earthquake in three decades and Hurricane Maria, which hit Puerto Rico on Wednesday.

Hannover Re said its budget for big natural disasters of 825 million euros ($980 million) would be able to absorb losses from Harvey and Irma, but that Hurricane Maria and the earthquake would exceed that budget, putting its full-year goals at risk.

Hannover Re has targeted a 2017 net profit of 1 billion euros, and Talanx, which owns just over 50 percent of Hannover Re, has aimed for a profit of around 850 million euros.

Hannover Re said a dividend payment at last year’s level was still possible. Talanx said a dividend at least at last year’s level was “assured”.

Shares in Talanx fell 1.9 percent to the bottom of the mid-cap MDAX index in early Frankfurt trade. Hannover Re was down 1.5 percent.

($1 = 0.8415 euros) (Reporting by Maria Sheahan; editing by Christian Schmollinger and Jason Neely)

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