• Germany edition
 
Euro crisis, earthquakes slam Munich Re profits
Photo: DPA

Euro crisis, earthquakes slam Munich Re profits

Published: 02 Feb 2012 10:20 GMT+01:00
Updated: 02 Feb 2012 10:20 GMT+01:00

Munich Re said in a statement it booked bottom-line net profit of €710 billion ($935 million) in 2011, a drop of 71 percent from a year earlier.

"The year was marked by a series of severe earthquakes and many weather-related catastrophes. In addition, there was the worsening of the sovereign debt crisis in the eurozone," the statement said.

"We have never experienced a year like 2011 before - extreme burdens from natural catastrophes combined with the financial crisis, which flared up again after the slight recovery in 2009 and 2010," said chief financial officer Jörg Schneider.

"Given the huge strains these placed on results, it is a notable achievement that we still posted a profit of €710 million," Schneider said.

While gross premiums for the year rose by 8.9 percent to €49.6 billion, investment earnings dropped 21.8 percent to €6.8 billion, not least as a result of €1.2 billion in writedowns on the group's holdings of Greek government securities.

Munich Re said that losses from natural catastrophes amounted to €4.5 billion for the entire year, with the deadly earthquake and ensuing tsunami in Fukushima, Japan, costing it €1.5 billion at a pre-tax level.

The group also said it expected insurance claims resulting from the earthquakes in New Zealand to amount to around €1.5 billion. And flooding in Thailand was projected to lead to claim costs of around €500 million.

Taking the fourth quarter alone, Munich Re's net profit rose by 33.1 percent to €630 million, beating analysts' expectations. In the wake of the results, Munich Re said it planned to pay shareholders an unchanged dividend of €6.25 per share.

Investors welcomed the news and Munich Re shares were showing gains of around 0.64 percent on the Frankfurt stock exchange on Thursday, outperforming the general market which was up 0.05 percent.

AFP/mry

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Tourists stranded on cable car over Rhine
Tuesday night's rescue operation Photo: DPA

Tourists stranded on cable car over Rhine

Six people, including a family and two American tourists, were left dangling 40 metres in the air over the Rhine for hours late on Tuesday after Cologne's cable car came to a halt. READ  

7:1! Bayern celebrate record Roma away score
Arjen Robben celebrates the first goal against AS Roma. Photo: DPA

7:1! Bayern celebrate record Roma away score

Bayern Munich were elated on Tuesday night after seuring a 7-1 victory against Roma in their group stage Champions League clash. READ  

Indian schools drop German teaching
Indian pupils enrolled in German classes prepare for Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier's visit to their school. Photo: DPA

Indian schools drop German teaching

Thousands of children in India will no longer be taught German after the country's education ministry allowed a contract to lapse. READ  

Nazi U-boat wreck found off US coast
A preserved World War II U-Boat on the beach near Kiel, Germany. Photo: DPA

Nazi U-boat wreck found off US coast

A World War II German U-boat and an American merchant vessel it sank in battle have been found deep in the ocean off the coast of North Carolina, officials said on Tuesday. READ  

Fourth time lucky for free Berlin WiFi?
Coming soon? Photo: DPA

Fourth time lucky for free Berlin WiFi?

Berlin's bid to set up a free city-wide wireless network has so far come to nothing. But city bosses are now trying for a fourth time - and hope to have the project running next year. READ  

Opinion
Do German unions have too much power?
Lufthansa passengers rush to change their flights at Frankfurt Airport on Monday. Photo: DPA

Do German unions have too much power?

Germany's pilots and train drivers are taking it in turns to bring the country to a standstill with strikes that have cost the economy tens of millions of euros in the last two weeks. Are unions abusing their power or standing up for their rights? READ  

Older workers can have extra days off, court says
Photo: Workers in a German shoe factory. Photo: DPA

Older workers can have extra days off, court says

Older workers in Germany are allowed more time off than younger ones, a court ruled on Tuesday, saying the difference was not discriminatory. READ  

Expat's family battles for answers four years on
Matthew Fitzpatrick died in 2010 in Mannheim. Photo: Fitzpatrick family

Expat's family battles for answers four years on

In 2010 an Irish computer engineer was found dead in his apartment in Baden-Württemberg. Four years on, his family are still pressing the German justice system for answers. They feel badly let down by police who they say have refused to examine evidence of foul play. READ  

Court: Germany can keep arms deals secret
The judges of the Supreme Court announce their decision about weapons exports on Tuesday. Photo: DPA

Court: Germany can keep arms deals secret

The government can keep arms deals secret and only tell the public about them after contracts have been signed, the Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday. READ  

Tourist finds €7,500 instead of cheesecake

Tourist finds €7,500 instead of cheesecake

Just how honest would you have to be to return €7,500 that you found in a box supposed to contain your favourite cheesecake? READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: Mariana Schroeder
Munich
Special Report: Hope and chaos at Munich's refugee shelters
Photo: DPA
Berlin
Robbers blow up Berlin bank
Photo: DPA
Culture
Can you top our history quiz leaderboard?
Photo: Facebook
Society
German motorcycle gang joins Isis fight
Photo: DPA
Politics
UKIP ‘seeks EU pact’ with German satirical party
Photo: DPA
Gallery
PHOTOS: World's biggest erotic fair opens in Berlin
Photo: DPA/Shutterstock
Gallery
11 things Germans are afraid of...
Sponsored Article
International School on the Rhine: a legacy
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The ten richest people in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Sponsored Article
Bilingual education from nursery to graduation at Phorms
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,488
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd