Like its peers, Allianz is reaping the full benefits of high prices in the property-casualty insurance markets; a buoyant interest-rate environment in the life insurance markets; and record performance fees in its asset management business, thanks to buoyant financial markets. 
All good news, in other words, which has led the company to confirm its target of €15 billion in operating profit this year - i.e. at the high end of its twenty-year profitability range, which averages around €11 billion. 
All the major insurers - European and North American alike - have been in good shape since the rise in interest rates in the United States. These developments crown a good ten-year balance sheet for Allianz, which continues to challenge Axa for the number-one position on the Old Continent. 
For the time being, the advantage goes to the German group, since since 2014 it has delivered a total return to its shareholders - share price appreciation plus dividend - significantly higher than that of the French company, and of course much higher than that of number three Generali.
In terms of profitability, the two rivals are more or less on an equal footing. But here too, Allianz has the advantage, as its leverage is one notch lower than that of Axa. 
Investors have of course taken note of this welcome development in the insurance sector. Allianz shares are trading at x1.7 equity value, compared with a ten-year average of x1.2. The enthusiasm is even more palpable with Axa shares, which are trading at x1.5 of equity value, compared with a ten-year average of x0.9.
In any case, the ten-year track record of CEO Oliver Bäte - appointed in October 2014 - is very positive. Allianz has doubled its dividend and reduced its number of outstanding shares by 12%. A new €1 billion share buyback plan has also just been launched. 
A typical portfolio fund for European managers, the German insurer's stock is now moving into risky territory. The Group's profitability is the highest it has been for almost twenty years, and a return to the average seems very likely in the short to medium term.