The Property Insurance Business Problem

The insurance industry is well equipped with tools and expertise for analyzing and pricing catastrophic weather risks, particularly for the major peril, tropical cyclones.

But this risk assessment is based mostly on climatology data, recent storm history, model scenarios, and assumptions. These have not proven to be accurate or helpful in anticipating severe storm losses in particular geographic regions in a given year.

In the case of Atlantic basin hurricanes, seasonal forecasts are widely available from various sources. But these “top-down” forecasts are too general, inaccurate, and frequently revised to aid in effective decision making.  When it comes to Pacific basin cyclones, the utility and accuracy of these general season forecasts compared to climatology is even lower.

The Solution

Planalytics’ Global Severe Weather Service provides year-round forecasting, monitoring, tracking, and alerting of weather perils. We deliver targeted actionable insights into the volatile weather risks of concern to the re/insurance and insurance-linked securities industries. Areas of focus include:

Atlantic Tropical Storm

  • Pre-season Detailed Forecasts for the Atlantic Basin, including the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico – January
  • Seasonal Strike Forecast for the United States – January
  • Pre-season County-Level Strike Probability Forecast for the United States – January
  • In-Season Forecasts and Daily Monitoring/Alerts

 Pacific Tropical Storm

  • Northwestern Pacific Pre-season Detailed Forecasts – March
  • Eastern Pacific Pre-season Detailed Forecasts – March
  • In-Season Forecasts and Daily Monitoring/Alerts, including the northwestern, southwestern, and eastern Pacific

Europe Windstorm

  • Pre-season Detailed Forecasts – October
  • In-Season Forecasts and Daily Monitoring/Alerts

U.S. Tornado, Flood, Convective Storm, Winter Storm, & Wildfire

  • Pre-season Outlooks – Timing varies by peril
  • In-Season Forecasts and Daily Monitoring/Alerts

Planalytics’ Global Severe Weather Service also includes regular client consultations via meetings, phone calls, and webcasts.


Preseason Tropical Storm Threat Forecasts: Atlantic Basin

Planalytics employs proprietary forecasting models and research to produce “bottom-up” long-range forecasts of “threat situations” – active periods and locations. Within these threats, we forecast the timing, path, and peak intensity of tropical storms expected to occur within the threat period.

There are typically one to three actual storms that occur within the period and location of each threat situation forecast. The primary threat period ranges from 10 to 14 days.


Only Planalytics has the proven ability to show clients when, where, and what to expect four months before the start of the tropical storm season. Moreover, because we rarely revise or even tweak the forecasts once issued, clients can proactively make critical portfolio management and hedging decisions.

 

Seasonal Strike Forecast: Atlantic Basin

The Seasonal Strike Forecast is an aggregate view of the individual threat situation forecasts, focusing on the relative landfall potential by storm intensity.

Note: The Planalytics 2020 pre-season forecast stated:

  • Planalytics is projecting what is historically an above-normal season for tropical activity.
  • Planalytics is projecting for the U.S. a threat for a major hurricane landfall in the Gulf of Mexico. A relatively quieter year expected for Florida and the East Coast.

 

County-Level Strike Probability Forecast: United States

Our Atlantic Basin pre-season forecasts include county strike probability maps and spreadsheet data tables for the continental United States.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Note: Map and probability table above is for category 3 and above. Map and table for tropical storm intensity and above are also available.

 

Pre-season Tropical Storm Threat Forecasts: Western and Eastern Pacific

Planalytics clients receive our threat forecasts for the Western and Eastern Pacific in March.

Pre-season Forecasts: Europe Windstorm

Our pre-season European windstorm forecast is released to clients in early October. It is based on the same underlying model as our pre-season tropical storm forecasts.  Though we do not forecast individual storm threat situations for Europe winter windstorms, we break the season into the current-year period and the new-year period. The forecast also breaks out north, central, and south Europe.

 

The Planalytics Model

Our proprietary tropical cyclone forecast model was developed in the early years of the 21st century by meteorologists, mathematicians, and computer scientists at Planalytics. We issued our first Atlantic Basin pre-season forecast in 2003. Following our success at forecasting the active years of 2004 and 2005, most notably Katrina, we commercialized the service for the insurance industry.

We use the model outputs to predict the formation, development, trajectory, and intensity of tropical cyclones. The model uses a super-ensemble of two-member proprietary models. Each member produces approximately 15-25 runs. From these runs, we generate daily composite forecasts. The models’ components:

  • perform a data mining function on past tropical cyclone activity
  • project the formation of individual disturbances within a given time frame and geographic domain
  • project whether conditions will be present that allow these storms to develop into maintainable systems
  • project the most likely trajectory zone for developed systems

No other institution  — commercial, government, or academic — releases long-range tropical storm forecasts with the degree of specificity and accuracy that Planalytics has produced for more than 15 years.

 

In-Season Monitoring, Forecasting, Alerting

The service includes daily storm monitoring and regular client consultations with a team of senior meteorologists. They specialize in severe weather and provide industry-specific focus and knowledge.

Our short-range forecast support includes:

  • Global daily monitoring, forecasting and alerting of high-wind events
  • Sent via email every day, including weekends/holidays. Includes links to the full report with maps and graphics
  • Daily Tropical Development Report for Atlantic, Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, Central America, Northwestern Pacific, Eastern Pacific, Southwestern Pacific (Australia)
  • Europe Wind Daily Report
  • Event Alert email notices typically several days ahead of government agency advisories
  • Alert notices employ graphics as needed to help convey a clear message

 

Tropical Cyclone Development Potential Daily Report

From the August 22, 2020 daily report: Planalytics forecast Tropical Storm Laura to pass north of Cuba, while the government forecast shows it passing lengthwise over Cuba.

 

U.S. Tornado, Flood, Convective Storm, Winter Storm, and Wildfire

  • Pre-season outlooks with monthly updates.
  • In-season tracking and forecasting.

 

Planalytics clients in the insurance, reinsurance, and insurance-linked securities industries know more. They know sooner about the timing, path, and intensity of developing tropical storms and windstorms, allowing them to gain valuable time and make more informed decisions. Planalytics clients often receive event alert notices one or two days before the release of government and other private weather service advisories.

 

For additional information, contact Jim Gagne, Head of Financial and Insurance Services, jgagne@planalytics.com.

To schedule a personal consultation about how Planalytics can help your company, contact Ryan Quinn, rquinn@planalytic.com.