Two black swans? Or No Black Swans?
Dan Glaser, CEO of Guy Carp, stated last week that he believes that the current fallout from Coronavirus represents two simultaneous black swans.
Nassim Taleb meanwhile, the very guy who brought the term ‘black swan’ into popular consciousness, has stated that what we are dealing with at the moment isn’t even a black swan!
So what’s going on here? And who is right?
Justice Thomas speaks
I saw this story today , and I've got to say I absolutely love it. Here is the tag line:
“Clarence Thomas Just Asked His First Question in a Supreme Court Argument in 3 Years”
For those like me not familiar with Justice Thomas, he is one of the nine Supreme Court Justices and he is famously terse:
“He once went 10 years without speaking up at an argument.”
“His last questions came on Feb. 29, 2016”
You could say I was speechless upon reading this (see what I did there?), for a judge who sits over some of the most important trials in the US to basically never speak during oral arguments seems pretty incredible.
If you are an actuary, you'll probably have done a fair bit of triangle analysis, and you'll know that triangle analysis tends to works pretty well if you have what I'd call 'nice smooth consistent' data, that is - data without sharp corners, no large one off events, and without substantially growth. Unfortunately, over the last few years, motor triangles have been anything but nice, smooth or consistent. These days, using them often seems to require more assumptions than there are data points in the entire triangle.
In case you missed it, Aon announced  last week that in response to the Covid19 outbreak, and the subsequent expected loss of revenue stemming from the fallout, they would be taking a series of preemptive actions. The message was that no one would lose their job, but that a majority of staff would be asked to accept a 20% salary cut.
The cuts would be made to:
So how significant will the cost savings be here? And is it fair that Aon is continuing with their dividend? I did a couple of back of the envelope calcs to investigate.
I work as an actuary and underwriter at a global reinsurer in London.