16 Feb 2011

Kiwisaver and lower insurance costs help AXA profit

7:30 am on 16 February 2011

AXA New Zealand has boosted full year operating earnings by almost a quarter, thanks to lower costs in its insurance arm and a growth in its Kiwisaver business.

The country's biggest fund manager reported earnings of $43.5 million in the year to the end of December, compared to $35.1 million in 2009.

Overall, the group's profit fell 11% to $800 million.

AXA New Zealand chief executive Ralph Stewart says its earnings in its insurance business improved by 28%, while its wealth management arm lifted earnings by 14%.

AXA Asia Pacific, which owns the New Zealand arm, is set to come under the control of AMP this year, after a $AUS13 billion merger.