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Previously minimal reinsurance buyer Allstate has performed a dramatic reappraisal of its reinsurance needs post-Katrina. The giant US direct insurer has decided to reinsure a much larger share of a country-wide catastrophe aggregate excess reinsurance to provide $2bn coverage in excess of $2bn of retained losses from named storms and earthquakes (and fires following quakes). Previously, it only bought $750m of a limit of $2bn in excess of $2bn. The company says it now plans to market the remainder of the limit for 2006, except for a minimum 5% planned retention.