NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The U.S. insurers with the greatest exposure to the Japanese earthquake and resulting tsunami are likely Berkshire Hathaway ( BRK.B - Get Report), American International Group ( AIG - Get Report) and Chubb Group ( CB - Get Report), said Sandler O'Neill + Partners' analyst Paul Newsome. "These insurers reported exposure to the earthquake in New Zealand and the floods in Australia," Newsome said, explaining those losses point to greater exposure to risks outside of the U.S.
Chubb reported in its 10-K that it expected $150 million to $200 million of pre-tax catastrophe losses from flooding and storms in Australia and the United States, but has not estimated losses related to the New Zealand earthquake. Berkshire Hathaway reported $661 million in catastrophe losses tied to earthquakes in Chile and New Zealand. Those losses also included storms in the U.S, Europe, and Australia. Lastly, American International Group could face more exposure than it did last quarter after recently purchasing the remaining shares of Fuji Fire and Marine Insurance Co. for 47 billion yen ($571 million) to bolster its Japanese insurance business.. AIG's Chartis recorded a catastrophe loss inthe fourth quarter of 2010 of $139 million, according to its 10K. Newsome added that Bermudian reinsurers XL Capital ( XL), and ACE ( ACE), also have exposure in the area. XL Capital reported a preliminary reinsurance loss estimates related to the New Zealand Earthquake in the range of $70 million to $85 million. ACE Limited said it had $45-$60 million in pre-tax catastrophe losses related to Australia flooding and storms. "Those insurers with the greatest exposure globally, of course, will be Tokyo Marine and other Japanese insurers, and European insurers such as Munich Re and Swiss Re ( SWCEY)," Newsome said. Swiss Re said it was too early to predict their exposure. --Written by Maria Woehr in New York. To contact the writer of this article, click here: Maria Woehr. To follow the writer on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/newsgirlmw. To submit a news tip, send an email to: email@example.com.