By Chester Yung
Asian insurance company AIA Group Ltd. (1299.HK) said Tuesday its net profit for the full year ended November rose a better-than-expected 47% from a year earlier, lifted by strong growth in the Hong Kong and China markets and higher investment returns amid volatile financial markets.
The pan-Asian insurer said its full-year net profit rose to US$6.12 billion from US$4.16 billion a year earlier, above the average forecast of US$5.34 billion by 16 analysts in a poll by FactSet. The firm's total revenue increased to US$38.33 billion from US$28.20 billion a year earlier.
The insurer's new-business value--a key measure of profitability--rose 28% to US$3.51 billion for the full fiscal year. Annualized new premium sales rose 19% to US$6.09 billion.
The company proposed a final dividend of 74.38 Hong Kong cents (9.51 US cents) per share, up 17% from a year earlier.
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