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Florence is expected to rank among the top 10 costliest hurricanes ever

The National Hurricane Center lowered Hurricane Florence to Category 2 on Thursday, but the catastrophic combination of heavy rains and a severe storm surge are making the storm more dangerous than ever.

With Florence nearing landfall, AccuWeather founder and president and chairman Joel Myers estimated the costs from the storm will be about $30 billion, placing it easily within the top 10 costliest in U.S. history.

Early estimates from J.P. Morgan put Florence’s estimated industry-insured losses between $8 billion and $20 billion, which still would rank it high historically.

“This would make Hurricane Florence one of the top 10 most costly hurricanes to hit the U.S. We think this would likely result in losses that are slightly less than one-quarter’s worth of earnings for the commercial (re)insurers we cover,” J.P. Morgan analyst Sarah DeWitt wrote in a note Monday.

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