Switzerland's leading life insurer, Swiss Life, has announced a surge in profits of 41.6 per cent to SFr387.1 million for 1999. The company said the increase was well above its own expectations.
Sales for 1999 rose 6.6 per cent to SFr17.9 billion. The vast majority of the company's income came from sales of life insurance premiums (87 per cent), while the rest was from the non-life insurance sector.
Swiss Life said the share of premium income from abroad had risen from 35 per cent in 1998 to 46 per cent in 1999.
The company said the leap in profits was due to the operative result and successful investments. Net profits from capital investments were up 20 per cent to SFr8 billion.
Swiss Life said that because of the good result, it was proposing raising the dividend from SFr9 to SFr11.
The first quarter of 2000 has also been good, leading Swiss Life to forecast a "substantial development of activities" for the year as a whole.
swissinfo with agencies