Insurer Axa today reported growth in earnings and revenues as it hailed a first half comparatively free of natural disasters.
Total revenues rose 0.5 per cent in the first six months of the year to €54.3bn (£48.6bn) from €54bn.
Underlying earnings rose four per cent to €3.2bn from €3.1bn, and earnings per share were up five per cent to €1.26 from €1.21 in the same period of last year.
The insurer improved its property and casualty combined ratio to 96.9 per cent from 98.4 per cent.
Why it's interesting
The bulk of Axa's earnings comes from its insurance business; life & savings was up four per cent at €1.98bn, and property & casualty rose six per cent to €1.35bn. The P&C business was boosted by lower claims from natural catastrophes in the first half.
Meanwhile, the French insurer is preparing to float a stake in its US operations early next year.
What Axa said
“Axa's balance sheet strength has been highlighted once more by our strong solvency II ratio at 201 per cent. We made substantial progress in improving our technical profitability in property & casualty. We continued to implement our efficiency strategy across the group and are well on track to achieve our cost savings target," said Thomas Buberl, chief executive of Axa.
"Our teams and distributors continued their engagement and commitment to our vision to empower people to live a better life. Axa has proved once again its ability to respond to profound environmental and economic change, notably by pledging to use 100 per cent sustainable electricity and providing better protection to independent workers in the digital sector."