Insurer boosted by home comforts

A strong performance from the household arm of insurer More Than helped Royal & Sun Alliance post a 5% hike in annual operating profits today.

A strong performance from the household arm of insurer More Than helped Royal & Sun Alliance post a 5% hike in annual operating profits today.

RSA said the strong result in household, following favourable weather conditions and initiatives to improve its claims management, offset competitive trading for More Than in the motor insurance market.

Across the group, chief executive Andy Haste said it had been a good 12 months for the company after it completed the disposal of its US operation, which had been a drag on the overall performance of the group.

RSA’s remaining operations, focused on the UK, Scandinavia and an international arm. Achieved an underwriting result of £310m (€455.7m) for 2006, up 18% on a year earlier.

Group operating profits increased to £780m (€1.15bn) from £743m (€1.09bn), although the cost of exiting the loss-making United States business left RSA with a bottom-line loss of £20m (€29.4m) for the year.

The company said its confidence in future prospects was shown by a 35% rise in its final dividend to 4.12p a share.

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