Extending our risk intelligence

We address sustainability, political, regulatory and emerging risks in our core business transactions. For this, we have developed specific tools and know-how.

Risk management is an integral part of Swiss Re’s business model and key to the controlled risk-taking that underpins our financial strength. It is embedded throughout our business and ensures that the Group and the three Business Units have the necessary expertise, frameworks and infrastructure to support good risk-taking (see 2016 Financial Report, Risk and capital management – Overview and Risk management).

Sound risk management is essential for a re/insurer. Tight control of our exposures guarantees that we can fulfil our role in society as ultimate risk-taker and be a reliable partner to our clients when they need us. The core categories of our risk landscape comprise insurance risk (property and casualty, life and health) as well as financial market and credit risk. In addition, we consider it essential for a responsible company to pay attention to further significant risks we may be exposed to, especially in the longer term.

Sustainability, political, regulatory and emerging risks are particularly relevant in this respect. We have developed instruments and know-how that help us to identify and assess all of them. This allows us to determine the specific risks we think we should avoid – because of their loss potential, for ethical reasons, or both. This extended risk awareness is also key to managing our assets responsibly. The risk assessments we make through our Sustainability Risk Framework, in particular, flow directly into our investment decisions.

Sustainability risks

We define sustainability risks as ethical concerns related to potential environmental and socio-economic impacts of our business transactions, and the reputational risks they may entail.