Ping An Insurance Company of China (Ping An) has reported a net profit of 87.57bn yuan ($11.97bn) for the first nine months of 2023, a decline of 5.6% compared with 92.78bn yuan a year ago.

For the January to September period, Ping An reported a 16.7% annualised operating return on equity.

The operating profit after tax of the company’s core financial businesses, notably life and health; property and casualty (P&C); and banking, was marginally down by 0.2% to 117.8bn yuan.

The group’s overall retail customer base increased by 1.5% to reach nearly 230 million as of 30 September 2023.

In the first nine months of 2023, life and health’s new business value was 33.57bn yuan, a 40.9% surge year-on-year on a like-for-like basis.

Ping An said the growth was driven by the launch of a variety of products and services, enhanced business quality and channel development.

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Ping An Life’s operating profit for the period under review was 84.91bn yuan.

The insurance revenue of the P&C business increased by 6.8% to 235.53bn yuan.

The cost of auto and non-auto insurance claims soared due to typhoons and rainstorms. In addition, the Chinese company said that travellers’ demands for motor insurance returned and shifts in the market environment impacted the guarantee insurance sector.

Announcing the result, Ping An noted: “Amidst uncertainties, Ping An will maintain its strategic focus on core financial businesses and continue advancing its technology-driven ‘integrated finance + healthcare’ strategy.

“Ping An will keep the continuity and stability of its profit distribution policy, and maintain value investing and long-term returns for shareholders. The company will keep its business resilience, build its strengths, continuously improve operations and management, advance comprehensive digital transformation, and increase cost-effectiveness to promote business recovery and growth.”