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With rescue operations coming to a close and recovery efforts underway all along the battered Gulf Coast, experts are still unsure as to what the insured damages from Hurricane Katrina will be. Assessments given to this point are no more than best guesses, as the Insurance Information Institute states that the size of losses will be unknown for some time. Many experts agree, however, that the damage done by Katrina will represent the largest insured losses ever in the United States.

The catastrophic damage done by the storm is evident even without seeing figures put forth by experts and analysts. Although the death toll now is said to be significantly lower than the 10,000 figure circulated earlier by some media outlets, fatalities still are predicted to be somewhere in the thousands. Aside from the loss of life, the impact on surviving residents in the regions struck by Katrina was shown on news stations throughout the world, the sharp spike in prices paid at the pump illustrated the effect on the energy industry, and images of destroyed houses and buildings indicate that the situation will be a challenge for insurers, as well.

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