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Allianz off to 'strong start' to 2016 as Q1 profit rises 20.5% YOY

recorded a"strong start to 2016," posting net income attributable toshareholders of €2.2 billion in the first quarter, up 20.5% from the year-agoperiod partly due to non-operating realized gains.

"Despitethe market volatility and low interest rates, we continue to expect anoperating profit for the full year of €10.5 billion, plus or minus €500million," said Allianz CEO Oliver Bäte.

Totalfirst-quarter revenues declined on a yearly basis to €35.4 billion from €37.8billion. Operating profit dropped over the same period to €2.8 billion from€2.9 billion.

Thecombined ratio in the German group's property & casualty division improvedto 93.3% from 94.6% in the first quarter of 2015, mainly due to fewer naturalcatastrophe-related claims. The new business margin in its life and healthdivision rose year over year to 2.5% from 1.5%.

Third-partyAUM at the group's asset management division amounted to €1.242 trillion atMarch-end, compared to €1.276 trillion at 2015-end.  

Thegroup's Solvency II capitalization ratio stood at 186% at the end of March,compared to 200% at the end of 2015, on the back of capital marketdevelopments, partly offset by risk management actions. Allianz also attributedthe decrease in part to a change in the regulatory treatment to German lifeinsurers since the beginning of 2016.

Allianzwill publish its full first-quarter results May 11.