Manulife reports increase in earnings for 20th straight quarter

It recorded the highest growth rate in agent numbers in the HK insurance scene

Manulife reports increase in earnings for 20th straight quarter

Insurance News

By Mary Or

The Manulife group of companies operating in Hong Kong and Macau has announced its financial results for the second quarter. This is the 20th consecutive quarter of year-over-year core earnings growth, driven by a higher proportion of health and protection policies sold during the pandemic.

“Although APE sales were hit by the prolonged pandemic, we are glad to see our customers become more aware of health risks, translating to higher demand for health and protection products, which accounted for 29% of our new business in the second quarter compared to 24% in the prior year quarter,” said  Pankaj Banerjee, interim CEO of Manulife Hong Kong and Macau.

Core earnings in the first half of the year rose by 1% to HKD3.4 billion, compared to HKD3.35 billion in the previous year. On a quarterly basis, core earnings were also up 1% from HKD1.66 billion to HKD1.69 billion. The increases were only partially offset by lower new business volumes caused by COVID-19.

Manulife Hong Kong and Macau reported APE sales of HKD2.36 billion – a 27% decrease from HKD3.22 billion last year. On a quarterly basis, sales also dropped by 32% from the HKD1.52 billion reported in the previous years. Manulife attributed these dips to the continued effect of the pandemic in Hong Kong and tighter containment measures implemented in Macau.

Still, Manulife was the biggest mandatory provident funds (MPF) provider, with a market share of 26.7% based on assets under management as of June 30. It was also the top MPF provider in terms of estimated net cash flows.

As of June 30, Manulife Hong Kong and Macau had a professional agency force of 11,479. It recorded the highest growth rate (6%) among large-scale life insurers in the Hong Kong insurance industry over the last year.

“We are proud of our expanding agency force, whose outperformance in the 2022 million-dollar round table (MDRT) top 100 companies ranking demonstrated its exceptional resilience throughout the pandemic,” Banerjee said. “We … took the no. 2 spot in Hong Kong and the no. 4 spot globally in terms of the number of financial advisors attaining the prestigious MDRT membership.”

Manulife has also extended its basic individual life insurance coverage to customers diagnosed with HIV and announced an expanded definition of family, enabling customers to name policy beneficiaries from an expanded list of family members and same-sex married partners to purchase life insurance policies for their loved ones where insurable interest exists.

Manulife also launched the ManuGlobal Saver in May 2022. The plan has a currency switch option among seven currencies that allows customers to change the policy currency to meet their evolving needs.

“As the longest continuously operating life insurer in Hong Kong, Manulife has been committed to protecting our customers and investing in the community over the past 125 years,” Banerjee said. “With the continued surge in demand for health and protection products on top of our award-winning product suite, we recently launched two new critical illness plans to help customers alleviate financial stress in the event of a critical illness diagnosis. We want them to know that Manulife is always here to support them throughout their medical journey….”

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