Monday, November 18, 2019
 
Columnist
Martin Hennecke

Hong Kong shines as Manulife new business rises
 
08/11/2019
 
Manulife Financial's (0945) third-quarter net income in the global market slumped 54 percent from a year ago to 723 million Canadian dollars (HK$4.15 billion) but new business value rose 14 percent year-on-year to 526 million Canadian dollars with the Hong Kong market doing well. Diluted earnings per common share for the quarter ended September 30 were 0.35 Canadian dollars, and the company declared a quarterly dividend of 0.25 Canadian dollars. Core earnings for the three months ended September 30 slid 0.8 percent from a year ago to 1.53 billion Canadian dollars but rose 5 percent quarter-on-quarter. The decrease compared in net income was driven by investment-related experience charges compared with gains in the same period of last year, as well as a 500 million Canadian dollars charge this year, said the insurer. Manulife's new business value in Asia increased 12.6 percent year-on-year to 430 million Canadian dollars, driven by a more favorable business mix. The insurer meanwhile reported its annualized premium equivalent in Hong Kong surged by 58 percent over a year earlier to HK$2.1 billion driven by the recently-launched health insurance and participating products, it said. New business value in this market also rose 55 percent year-on-year to HK$1.3 billion. For the first nine months this year, Manulife recorded an annualized premium equivalent of HK$4.9 billion, rising 37 percent from a year ago, while new business value grew 32 percent to HK$3 billion. Manulife shares rose 1.88 percent to HK$152 yesterday. Local insurers, however, saw losses in their accident and property protection business, as a result of social unrest and last year's Typhoon Mangkhut, said Clement Cheung Wan-ching, chief executive of the Insurance Authority.
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