The most popular country for U.S.-based reinsurers to assume P&C premiums from is the United Kingdom, including Northern Ireland, which emerges as the leader for 2012 in a new analysis of statutory data by SNL Financial. Insurers based in the U.K. ceded around $2.90 billion in P&C premiums to U.S.-based reinsurers as of the year's end.

The two largest U.K.-based reinsurance relationships covered FM Insurance Co. Ltd. and Berkshire Hathaway International Insurance Ltd., which are subsidiaries of Factory Mutual Insurance Co. and Berkshire Hathaway Inc., respectively. The next three covered Lloyd's companies.

While Europe remains a popular source of P&C business for U.S.-based reinsurers—Switzerland ($1.4 billion), Luxembourg ($1.05 billion) and Germany ($876 million) are also major factors—Bermuda ($2.16 billion) is a close second to the U.K., and places like Canada ($1.34 billion) and Mexico ($645 million) are also prime areas of focus, SNL's analysis reveals.

After American International Group Inc., which reinsured its AIG Insurance Co. of Canada unit, the reinsurer with the most P&C exposure to Canada through its U.S. units was Everest Re Group Ltd. PartnerRe Ltd. was another example. Its U.S.-based subsidiaries assumed nearly $100 million in premiums from Canadian P&C writers, and PartnerRe disclosed July 15 that it expected $45 million to $60 million in losses from the flooding in Alberta.

According to the data, Brazil ($500 million) and Singapore ($351 million) are two places being viewed more favorably by the reinsurance industry, as both moved up the top 15 in 2012. AIG, Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd. and SCOR SE had some of the largest reinsurance exposure to Brazil P&C risk through their U.S. units, while Berkshire Hathaway, Zurich Insurance Group Ltd. and W. R. Berkley Corp. were on the high end for Singapore.

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