Allianz Confident for 2019 After Second-Quarter Windfall

German insurer Allianz on Friday reported rising profits in the second quarter thank to a windfall in its life insurance arm, allowing it to confirm its outlook for the full year.

Source: AFP | Published on August 2, 2019

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In April-June, net profit at the group grew 13.1 percent year-on-year, to 2.1 billion euros ($2.3 billion), Allianz said in a statement.

Analysts surveyed by Factset had forecast a lower result just under two billion.

A negative effect linked to selling off a life insurance portfolio in Taiwan burdened Allianz's results, but was outweighed by a positive accounting change on the same business in the United States.

Allianz's revenues grew 6.1 percent, to 33.2 billion euros, for an operating, or underlying profit up 5.4 percent at 3.2 billion.

The flagship property and casualty insurance unit saw sales grow 7.3 percent, but operating profits fell back as its investment earnings came in lower.

Thanks to lower payouts linked to natural disasters, the so-called "combined ratio" -- which compares premiums paid in to reimbursements paid out -- was steady at over 94 percent over the first half of the year.

Meanwhile Allianz's asset management division saw the funds it manages on others' behalf grow to a record of almost 1.6 trillion euros.

Looking ahead to the full year, the Munich-based insurer aims to reach an operating profit of 11.5 billion euros, plus or minus 500 million depending on events like natural disasters.

The financial firm is handing money to shareholders in a share buyback programme.

So far the scheme has shaved its cash buffer -- the so-called Solvency II capitalisation ratio -- from 229 percent at the end of 2018 to 213 percent at the end of June, remaining well above the 180 percent minimum.