The increases we are reporting today in operating earnings, net income, value of new business and new life sales demonstrate the strong underlying performance of Aegon's businesses.
- Business growth drives earnings performance:
- Net operating earnings up 2% to EUR 509 million* (up 7% in constant currency)
- Net underlying operating earnings up 10% to EUR 531 million (up 15% in constant currency)
- Net income up 47% to EUR 541 million:
- Increase mainly due to higher operating earnings and additions to provisions for guarantees in 2006
- Strong increase in new life sales of 12%; Total deposits rise 53%
- Profitable growth as value of new business rises 51% to EUR 235 million
- Revenue generating investments up 4% (constant currency: up 11%)
* 2007 is compared to pro forma data for 2006. These figures are presented after the change in accounting principles and after the change in definition of operating earnings to include Aegon's share in net results of associates and exclude the effect of any movements in the fair value of guarantees, as would have been the case had Aegon The Netherlands' hedge program been in place for those two years. Net income is, however, only affected by the change in the accounting principles. See also Table Financial Overview on page 3 of the full press release and Aegon's press release of July 24, 2007. See also page 36 of the full press release for more details.
Commenting on developments during the third quarter, Donald J. Shepard, Chairman of Aegon's Executive Board, stated:
"The increases we are reporting today in operating earnings, net income, value of new business and new life sales demonstrate the strong underlying performance of Aegon's businesses.
"During the quarter, we made good progress in further strengthening Aegon's distribution network in the United States, Asia and Europe with our acquisition of Merrill Lynch's life insurance business, our new partnership with Taishin bank in Taiwan and a new joint venture in Spain with Caja Cantabria. In addition, our new license to begin operations in the southern province of Guangdong will further expand our presence in the rapidly developing Chinese market.
"The 12% increase in new life sales for the Group was the result of solid growth across all units. In Aegon's Other Countries unit, new life sales doubled compared to the third quarter of 2006, due especially to strong sales in both Taiwan and Poland.
"In the United States, we achieved solid deposit growth with a 67% increase compared with the same period last year. The increase was primarily a result of strong production growth in our pension and institutional businesses. In Central and Eastern Europe, strong sales of pensions and mutual funds also contributed to a 53% increase in overall deposits for the Group.
"Aegon's total revenue generating investments increased by 11% at constant currency exchange rates. This reflects the net growth of both our deposits and premium business, as well as market performance.
"Aegon experienced no impairments in its subprime investment holdings during the quarter. We continue to be confident with our position in the difficult US subprime market.
"Today we have announced that I will be stepping down as Chairman of the Executive Board at the next Annual General Meeting of Shareholders in April 2008, in keeping with Aegon's customary retirement age. I am very pleased with the selection of Alex Wynaendts to succeed me and wish him every success in creating value for Aegon's stakeholders in the years to come."