AMP Ltd., an Australian fund manager and insurer, declined the most in almost three years as it reported higher-than-expected insurance claim losses and said March quarter wealth management cash flows dropped.
Shares in the Sydney-based firm fell 6.8 percent to A$5.44 at 11:59 am in Sydney compared with a 0.5 percent decline for the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index. AMP’s decline is its worst since June 2013 and the stock is trading at its lowest level in a month.
AMP reported wealth management net cashflows of A$209 million ($153 million) in the first quarter, down from A$342 million a year earlier amid weaker investment confidence and market volatility, according to a regulatory statement. The wealth protection business experienced insurance losses of A$18 million, it said.
UBS Group AG analysts led by James Coghill cut the company to neutral from buy and reduced their 12-month share price target to A$5.50 from A$6.30.
While lower cash flows were expected, “the re-emergence of quite significant losses in wealth protection is however a more concerning feature,” the analysts said. “The absence of any meaningful losses from major bank competitors in recent weeks indicates higher incidence levels could be an AMP-specific problem.”