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Aegon earnings boosted by positive markets

Aegon UK saw a 15 per cent increase in underlying earnings before tax for Q3 from £20m to £23m, as the firm was boosted by positive equity markets. 

Aegon’s life business fell 11 per cent from £19m in Q3 2012 to £17m, while pensions earnings grew three-fold from £2m to £6m. The results for distribution arm Origen are now included as part of the insurer’s pensions figures. 

Earnings were hit by the costs of developing Aegon’s new self-direct service as well as £4m of costs related to poor persistency levels.

The firm recorded a one-off £79m boost to net income due to a corporate tax rate reduction. Overall net income was £88m, including £8m of restructuring costs, compared to £30m for the same period in 2012.

Aegon UK chief executive Adrian Grace says: “We are now seeing the strategy we have put in place beginning to pay off and we still have a lot more of our proposition to roll out early next year. We look forward to working with advisers to help them service all of their clients in a post RDR world.”

Investment Quorum chief executive Lee Robertson says: “A lot of the predictions post-RDR were that advisers would push life business as they could still earn commissions in that sector but these results have not borne that out. It does seem to show that everyone is focusing on pensions right now. The message is reaching consumers that they need to start taking responsibility for their futures.”

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