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Insurers stare at up to $60 billion hit from Hurricane Ian, AIG chief Zaffino says

(Reuters) - Insurers face potential losses of up to $60 billion from Hurricane Ian, American International Group Inc (AIG) chief Peter Zaffino said on Wednesday, in what could be the second largest natural catastrophe loss in U.S. history.

The forecast from one of the world's biggest commercial insurers is in line with existing projections. Risk modeling firm Verisk said last month it expected insurance losses in the range of $42 billion to $57 billion.

At $85 billion in insurance losses on an inflation-adjusted basis, Hurricane Katrina is the biggest natural catastrophe loss in U.S. history, Zaffino said.

AIG pegged at $50 billion the lower end of expected losses from Hurricane Ian.

After striking the U.S. mainland in September, Ian ravaged Florida and the Carolinas with catastrophic force, killing over 100 people.

Zaffino's comments on a conference call comes after the U.S. insurer on Tuesday reported a more than 39% slump in third-quarter profit on claims tied to Ian and softer investment returns.

AIG said about $450 million of the total $600 million of catastrophe losses was attributable to Hurricane Ian.

Excluding one-time items, the company earned 66 cents per share, above Refinitiv IBES estimate of 53 cents.

(Reporting by Niket Nishant in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

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