Aegon's Q2 net profit drops 24 pc

9th August 2007, Comments 0 comments

9 August 2007, AMSTERDAM (AP) – Insurance company Aegon NV said Thursday second-quarter net profit fell 24 percent due mostly to impairment charges at its Dutch pension business.

9 August 2007

AMSTERDAM (AP) – Insurance company Aegon NV said Thursday second-quarter net profit fell 24 percent due mostly to impairment charges at its Dutch pension business.

But the Hague-based company said operating profits grew strongly, that it hadn't been hurt by troubles in the U.S. mortgage market, and it announced a EUR 1 billion share buyback.

Net profit was EUR 655 million, down from EUR 857 million, while revenue increased 10 percent to EUR 9.39 billion.

Operating profit would have risen 22 percent, Aegon said, if not for the Dutch write-down.

At the company's U.S. operations - where it owns Transamerica and generates two thirds of its sales - operating profit rose 3 percent to EUR 574 million.

At its Dutch operations profit fell 74 percent to EUR 108 million from EUR 412 million, and at its British operations, they rose 29 percent to EUR 71 million.

"Given continuing concerns over investments backed by sub-prime mortgages in the United States, it is worth emphasising that ...none of our holdings was included in the recent rating agency downgrades," Aegon said in a statement.

The company "does not expect material impairments to its holdings" as a result of problems in credit markets.

The buyback and an increased dividend "will not hamper (the company's) ability to invest in the growth of its businesses or to accomplish (worthwhile) acquisitions," Aegon said.

The company reported net earnings declines in nearly all categories.

The fall in earnings from Dutch pensions and asset management was sharpest, falling by more than EUR 250 million.

Aegon said it didn't expect the writedown to recur.

[Copyright AP 2007]

Subject: Dutch news

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