Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Allianz upbeat after profits jump on fewer disasters

Sean Gallup | Getty Images

FRANKFURT: German insurance giant Allianz on Friday confirmed its full-year outlook after a “strong” third quarter boosted by lower claims for natural disasters.

Net profit attributable to shareholders at the Munich-based group climbed 24 percent to 1.9 billion billion euros ($2.2 billion) between July and September year-on-year, beating analyst expectations.

Operating or underlying profits rose 21 percent to 3.0 billion euros, on the back of revenues up nearly eight percent to 30.5 billion euros.

Growth was driven by Allianz’ life insurance unit, where brisk sales in the United States and Germany helped offset lower demand in Asia.

The key property and casualty division benefited from “a successful third quarter” thanks to fewer natural catastrophes and lower expenses.

“Losses from natural catastrophes went down to a normal level,” Allianz said, after a string of disasters — including storms in Europe, Californian forest fires and several hurricanes — sapped earnings in 2017.

The group’s other main business, asset management, also posted double-digit growth in earnings.

Chief executive Oliver Baete hailed “a strong performance across the board” over the first nine months of the year, bolstered by “substantial productivity gains” at Allianz.

The group confirmed it was on track to hit its target of reaching a full-year operating profit of 11.1 billion euros, give or take 500 million depending on unforeseen events, crises or natural disasters.

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