Wellington Underwriting will revise its 2006 business plan in order to capitalise on a hardening market after Hurricane Katrina.

Chief executive Preben Prebensen said he expected to see rate increases in non-UK commercial property, off-shore energy and treaty reinsurance following the New Orleans disaster.

Wellington is now looking to increase capacity in Lloyd's syndicate 2020 above the $660m initially set aside.

Prebensen said: "Hurricane Katrina will have a significant effect on the market and we will be reviewing our strategy over the next couple of weeks with the intention of taking advantage of opportunities in these classes."

Syndicate 2020 was hit by $120m net losses from Katrina, of which $75m were with Wellington.

The company this week reported a 78% increase in group underwriting profits for the first half, with a net combined ratio of 82%.