Following on the trend of the first nine months of the year, total written premium amounted to € 74,165 million (+4.6%). This growth was led by the life segment where income increased by 6.2 %; the P&C segment also showed recovery (+0.8%) despite the ongoing challenges in the macro-environment in many markets where the Group operates. Premiums written performance for the fourth quarter was positive in both segments.
Life segment written premiums stood at € 53,297 million, recording a 6.2% increase, thanks to improvements across all lines of business. In accordance with the strategy to optimize performance of the life insurance business, favouring products with low capital absorption, the unit/index linked contracts are up by 8.6%and the protection contracts are up 11.8%. The savings policies were also up by 3.7%.
The main countries where the Group operates showed growth: Italy expanded (+11.5%), in addition to France (+3,8%), Germany (+3.4%) and the Central and Eastern European countries (+7.4%).
This performance led to life net inflows of almost € 15 billion, an increase of 15.5%.
New business in terms of Annual Premium Equivalents (APE) was substantially stable, amounting to € 5,210 million (-0.2% constant exchange rates and shares attributable to the Group); the development in the unit/index linked business (+14.6%) and risk business (+22.4%) were actually offset by the drop in the savings policies (9.8%).
The profitability of new business (margin on APE) held up well, standing at 21.0% (24.0% as at 31 December 2014) due to the adverse economic climate where interest rates fell and the strong increase in volatility recorded in the second quarter of 2015. New business value (NBV) amounted to € 1,097 million (-13%).
As noted above, gross written premiums in the P&C segment continued the recovery in place for the first 9 months of the year, increasing to € 20.868 million. The slight increase (+0.8%) was due to the non-motor segment which was up in most of the main territories of the Group. The motor lines were stable despite the strong competitive pressure in some of the main markets the Group operates in; growth in Germany and Eastern European countries was actually offset by the falls in the markets hardest hit by the current macro-economic climate like Italy and France.