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Allianz bounces back with bumper third-quarter profit

The group said it increased net profit to 1.95 billion euros ($2.1 billion) between July and September, an increase of 35 percent year-on-year.

Its result outdid the expectations of analysts surveyed by Factset, who had forecast a net profit of 1.6 billion.

Allianz is now on course to meet its full-year target of 10.5 billion euros in underlying, or operating profit over the full year after earning just over 8.0 billion in the first nine months, chief financial officer Dieter Wemmer said in a statement.

“Efforts to develop our business in a very difficult environment are paying off,” Wemmer said.

In its statement, Allianz pointed to a “better performance across its business segments” to explain the rise in profits.

The group highlighted its property and casualty insurance division, which increased underlying, or operating profit more than four percent compared with the third quarter in 2015.

A wave of heavy floods and storms in Europe had knocked more than 15 percent off the unit’s operating profit over the first half of 2016.

Meanwhile, the third quarter also saw Allianz increase overall revenues 0.5 percent to 27.7 billion euros.

Declining revenues in the group’s asset management division were offset by growth in the life and health insurance unit.

“Operating profit and net profit are clearly better than expected” across the whole firm, analyst Thorsten Wenzel of DZ bank wrote.

“The most positive news in our view is that asset management… has stopped net outflows,” he continued.

Like other insurance and financial sector firms, Allianz has struggled with historic low interest rates, which make it more difficult to earn high re