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Quantitative and qualitative risk management methods

The qualitative and quantitative elements of our risk management are of crucial importance overall. In the interests of our shareholders and clients we strive to ensure that our risks remain commensurate with our capital resources.

Our quantitative risk management provides a uniform framework for the evaluation and steering of all risks affecting the company as well as of our capital position. In this context, the internal capital model is our central tool. The internal capital model of Hannover Re is a stochastic enterprise model. Based on predefined probability distributions, a large number of scenarios are generated for technical risks, counterparty defaults, capital market conditions and other business events and their effect on the company’s financial situation is determined. The central variable in risk and enterprise management is the economic capital, which is calculated according to market-consistent measurement principles and in many respects corresponds to the business valuation likely to be adopted in future under Solvency II. The internal capital model encompasses all quantifiable risks and splits them into technical risks, market risks, credit risks and operational risks. These risks are carried over to Hannover Re’s risk map and further broken down, e. g. into interest rate risks, catastrophe risks and reserving risks. Dependencies exist between these risks, which Hannover Re takes into account in order to adequately establish its target capitalisation. The model enables us to consistently measure and aggregate the individual risks and to analyse the interactions between risks. Last but not least, we are able to verify whether the level of available economic capital exceeds the capital required to operate the business.

Qualitative methods and practices are a fundamental element of our internal risk management and control system as well as of potential future requirements for the Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA). Systematic risk identification, analysis, measurement, steering and monitoring as well as risk reporting are crucial to the effectiveness of risk management as a whole. Only by giving prompt consideration to risks can the continued existence of Hannover Re be assured. The system that is in place – in common with the corporate and risk strategy – is subject to a constant cycle of planning, action, control and improvement. The Framework Guideline on Risk Management describes the existing elements of the risk management system that has been put in place. It is intended to establish homogeneous standards for risk management. The Framework Guideline defines, among other things, the major tasks, rights and responsibilities, the organisational framework conditions and the risk control process. Principles are also set out governing the evaluation of new products in light of risk considerations as well as risk reporting. Internal risk reporting safeguards systematic and timely communication within the company about all material risks. Risk reporting covers inter alia the defined limits and thresholds, key ratios, expert assessments and a summary presentation of the risk situation. The regular quarterly reporting is supplemented as necessary by immediate internal reporting on material risks and limit oversteps that emerge suddenly. The criteria for this reporting are also specified in the Framework Guideline on Risk Management. Within the central system of limits and thresholds for the material risks, key ratios have been specified for steering and monitoring. Risk steering and monitoring is operationalised through the specification of suitable limits and thresholds for quantitatively measurable material risks. Material risks that cannot be quantified or are difficult to quantify (such as reputational risks) are primarily steered using appropriate processes and practices and are monitored with the aid of qualitative measurement methods, such as expert assessments.

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