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Veteran risk manager Vance Beaumont probably didn’t think he could be shocked by property insurance prices. But even he had to admit to being a little surprised in the fourth quarter of 2005. After the most costly hurricane season in history–a record $40.8 billion in insured losses in the third quarter of 2005 alone–premiums went up, but not nearly as much as the risk manager for Sun Microsystems Inc. had anticipated. As a member of the board of the Rocky Mountain chapter of the Risk and Insurance Management Society, Beaumont also had the opportunity to poll his board colleagues, who similarly reported single-digit price hikes. “I’m breathing pretty easily now,” Beaumont says.

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