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Aviva UK profits up 3 per cent

Aviva’s operating profits for the first six months of 2011 rose 3 per cent from £691m in the first half of 2010 to £709m this year as the insurer gears up for automatic enrolment and the RDR.

The provider’s interim results show operating profits in the firm’s life and pensions business dropped from £463m last year to £462m this year.

However, last year’s figure was skewed upwards by a one-off benefit of £84m after Aviva decided to reattribute its inherited estate in 2009.

If the impact of this payment is excluded, total UK operating profits were up 17 per cent compared to the first half of 2010 and life and pensions profits increased 22 per cent.

Aviva Group chief executive Andrew Moss says: “This has been a successful six months. We are beating all our operational targets.

“Operating profits rose in the UK and have increased by 21 per cent in Europe despite tough economic conditions.”

Total life and pensions sales increased 5 per cent from £5.19bn in the first half of 2010 to £5.47bn this year, while total pension sales were up 33 per cent from £2.06bn to £2.74bn.

Annuity sales increased slightly to £1.61bn compared with £1.60bn in the first half of 2010.

Aviva also announced extensions to its distribution deals with Santander and Barclays, and says it “stands to benefit” from auto-enrolment and the RDR.

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