Standard Life reports slip in first half pre-tax profits and earnings per share

Standard Life is the second major insurer to report a boost in operating profits this morning, with group pre-tax operating profits up six per cent to £304m (release).

However, pre-tax profits slipped 6.6 per cent to £281m. Basic earnings per share was also down to 3.5p from 5.5p.

Operating profits were boosted by a 28 per cent boost in UK operating profit to £161m and a 37 per cent rise in profits from Standard Life Investmetns to £93m. This more than offset profit falls in Canada, Asia and emerging markets, and other business divisions.

Long-term savings new business sales increased by over £2bn to a record high of £12.2bn.

The group announced an interim dividend of 5.22p, up from 4.90p the year before.

David Nish, Chief Executive, commented:

Standard Life has made really good progress in the first half of the year, delivering substantial growth in sales, flows and assets, all driving higher revenues and operating profits….

Canada is making progress in transforming its business, and our joint ventures in India continue to deliver strong performance in a market where we see further opportunities for our businesses.

We look forward to the future as our business model, propositions, distribution capability and strong balance sheet mean we are confident we can deliver ongoing improvements in value for our customers and shareholders.

This follows Aviva's announcement this morning of a five per cent boost in operating profits.