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Pru UK sales fall as bond business dips

Prudential&#39s new business figures show strong growth internationally but weak performance in the UK and a tailing-off in demand for its Prudence bond.

Third-quarter figures show total sales for the group rose by 34 per cent to £20.2bn compared with £15bn for the same period last year.

However, UK operations showed a 3 per cent decline in sales to £565m from £582m last year based on an equivalent premium income.

Directly sold products were unchanged at £230m while sales through intermediaries fell by 4 per cent to £338m from £352m.

Pru had strong growth in individual annuity business, with a rise to £122m from £89m in the third quarter of last year.

Demand for the Prudence bond has halved since the start of the year.

The company says the figures are as expected and attributes them to the current economic climate.

Pru took £328m in with-profits bond business in the third quarter compared with £462m for the second quarter and £717m for the first quarter. Sales of the flagship product were £534m for the third quarter of 2001 and total sales were £2.2bn last year.

Group chief executive Jonathan Bloomer says: “Good contributions from across the group, which were achieved in difficult market conditions, have resulted in these strong sales figures and our strategy of growing internationally.

“Broadening our distribution reach and diversifying our product range has once again been fully endorsed.”

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