Suncorp Group Ltd (ASX: SUN) and RACV, Australia’s two of Australia’s leading insurers, have so far received 1600 claims arising from heavy rains and floodwaters that have left thousands of people homeless across Victoria and NSW in the past week, according to a report in The Australian.

Both insurers are braced for a sharp rise in claims over coming days. Suncorp has received 1100 claims so far. “Right now, it is still early days but we do not consider this a significant insurance claims event”, a spokesman for Suncorp said.

The outlook doesn’t appear any better, with the Australian weather bureau raising the possibility a cyclone could develop off south-east Queensland.

Australia’s insurers were hit with insurance claims of almost $5 billion last year, thanks to a spate of natural disasters.

Insurance Australia Group (ASX: IAG) which includes NRMA Insurance and CGU, said it was too early to give any claim numbers, and QBE Insurance Group (ASX: QBE) declined to comment on how their business had been affected by the floods.

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Motley Fool contributor Mike King owns shares in QBE. The Motley Fool’s purpose is to educate, amuse and enrich investors. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson. Click here to be enlightened by The Motley Fool’s disclosure policy.

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