Backchat was pleased to see Benfield’s typically quirky touches in its report on trends in the reinsurance market.

The report, Capital Consequences – Billion-Dollar Question, published this week, spoke of a “witches’ brew” of events that could cause rates to harden. There was also reference to the “GI force” of hurricanes Gustav and Ike.

The billion-dollar question of the title is, of course, whether the cycle has turned. Benfield is no stranger to amusing word play. Readers may recall a report published some years ago in which it described reinsurance pricing as like a crème brûlée: hard on the outside, soft on the inside. Genius.