By Pietro Lombardi
Allianz SE (ALV.XE) said on Friday that its third-quarter net profit recorded a double-digit drop, hit by high natural catastrophe claims.
The German insurer said net profit fell 17% to 1.57 billion euros ($1.82 billion) compared with the same period last year. Operating profit was EUR2.48 billion compared with EUR3 billion a year earlier. Revenue slipped 2.1% to EUR28.3 billion.
Analysts had expected the company to post net profit of EUR1.53 billion.
The company said the decline in profit was mainly due to a EUR529 million loss from natural catastrophes.
Claims from natural catastrophe weighed on the company's property-and-casualty business's operating profit, which declined 28% to EUR1 billion.
Operating profit at Allianz's life-and-health segment declined 10.3% to EUR1.1 billion.
Allianz said its asset-management business posted third-party net inflows of EUR32 billion euros, the fifth consecutive quarter with such inflows. However the business's operating profit declined 2.7% to EUR588 million.
The company didn't provide a specific figure for its U.S. fund manager Pacific Investment Management Co. Pimco went through a difficult period after the departure of co-founder Bill Gross in 2014, which sparked an outflow of money, but has recorded third-party net inflow in the previous four quarters.
Allianz said it expects its operating profit "in the upper half of the target range of 10.8 billion euros, plus or minus 500 million euros."
"The group absorbed claims stemming from hurricanes, storms and earthquakes in the quarter and still increased operating earnings in the nine-month period," said Chief Executive Oliver Bate.
Separately, Allianz announced a share-buyback program of up to EUR2 billion, expected to be executed in the first half of 2018.
Repurchased shares will be cancelled, Allianz said, adding that "the implementation of the share buy-back program is subject to maintaining a sustainable Solvency II ratio of Allianz Group above 160 percent."
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