AIA Group Ltd. posted a year-over-year decrease in net profit for the 12 months ended Dec. 31, 2018.
The company said consolidated net profit attributable to shareholders fell to US$2.60 billion, or 22 U.S. cents per share, from US$6.50 billion, or 54 cents per share, in the year-ago period.
The S&P Global Market Intelligence consensus normalized EPS estimate for the fiscal year was 37 cents. The GAAP EPS estimate was 41 cents.
In February 2018, the board changed the company's financial year-end date to Dec. 31 from Nov. 30. As a result, the current financial period-end date of the company is Dec. 31, 2018, and the consolidated financial statements cover the 13-month period from Dec. 1, 2017 to Dec. 31, 2018.
Premiums and fee income grew to US$31.27 billion from US$27.24 billion, while net premiums and fee income rose to US$29.43 billion from US$25.72 billion.
The group's investment return fell to US$2.66 billion from US$13.91 billion. Total revenue dropped to US$32.37 billion from US$39.85 billion.
Net insurance and investment contract benefits stood at US$21.96 billion, down from US$25.83 billion in the prior-year period.
Value of new business for fiscal 2018 climbed 22% to US$3.96 billion. The value of new business margin was up 3.7 percentage points to 60.0% year over year in 2018.
AIA's annualized new premiums edged up by 15% to US$6.51 billion.
Operating profit after tax rose to US$5.30 billion from US$4.64 billion. Total weighted premium income increased to US$30.54 billion from US$26.39 billion.
The company's board recommended an increase of 14% in the 2018 final dividend to 84.80 Hong Kong cents per share and a special dividend of 9.50 Hong Kong cents per share.