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Asbestos Still Unfunded By $45B: Best

A study by A.M. Best Co. says the amount of asbestos risk unfunded by carriers has dropped, but a wave of new litigation threatens existing reserves and insurers need to do more to pump up reserves.

In a report titled “Asbestos Wave Rises; Crest Yet to Come,” the Oldwick, N.J.-based insurance rating firm painted a worrisome picture of the future of asbestos and environmental related risks. The 14-page report said there remains $45 billion in unfunded asbestos and environment risk ($20 billion for asbestos; $25 billion for environmental), in spite of the asbestos reserve hikes some carriers have made since Best published its 2001 estimates.

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