Skip to content

German Floods Cost a Record $40 Billion, Munich Re Estimates

  • Flood damages vastly exceed amount covered by insurers
  • Globally, natural disasters cost $280 billion last year
Flood damage in Altenahr, Germany, on July 19, 2021.
Flood damage in Altenahr, Germany, on July 19, 2021.Photographer: Christof Stache/AFP/Getty Images

Germany suffered its costliest natural disaster on record last year, as flash floods led to damages that vastly exceeded the amount covered by insurers.

Torrential rainfall that devastated parts of western Germany in July 2021 cost Europe’s biggest economy $40 billion, according to a Munich Re report published on Monday. Roughly a quarter of that will be met by the insurance industry, it said.