Business / Industries

Insurance firms' profits soar in Q1

By Li Xiang ( Updated: 2015-04-28 17:02

Insurance companies in China saw their profit more than double in the first quarter thanks to the steady rise of premium income and the surge of investment return in the equities market, data from the China Insurance Regulatory Commission showed on Tuesday.

Profits in the insurance sector in the first quarter reached to an estimated 87.09 billion yuan ($14.1 billion), up by 142.6 percent from the same period last year. Total premium income stood at 842.5 billion yuan, up by 20.4 percent year-on-year, according to the regulator.

The surge in profit was partly driven by the improved investment return as insurance companies boosted asset allocation in stocks and mutual funds amid a booming equities market, Bai Yun, a CIRC official said at a news conference in Beijing.

"Many insurance companies saw investment return grow by more than 100 percent, which contributed significantly to their profit," he said.

Meanwhile, insurance companies reduced investment in assets of fixed return in the first quarter. Asset allocation by insurance funds in the bond market and bank deposits dropped by 6.01 percent and 3.77 percent year-on-year respectively, according to Bai.

Investment by insurance funds in the equities market stood at 1.3 trillion yuan in the first quarter, accounting 13.2 percent of their total investment, up by 2.9 percentage points from the same period of last year, according to the CIRC.

The insurance cancellation rate was also on the rise in the first quarter, up by 2.24 percentage points to 3.77 percent, as investors moved capital to the country's world-beating stock market. But it has not affected the cash flow of the overall insurance market, the regulator said.

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