Despite a slight decrease in Switzerland, premium income rose once again in the 1999 financial year. It amounted to CHF 17.9 billion, to which the life sector contributed 87% and the non-life sector 13%. In particular newly consolidated companies in France contributed to this gratifying result. These include Lloyd Continental, a private insurance company acquired in February 1999, and the CCF subsidiary ERISA, in which Swiss Life/Rentenanstalt has a majority holding since July 1999.
The share of premiums from foreign business operations rose by more than 46% (previous year: 35%). France contributed 21%, Germany 10%, the Benelux countries 10%, Great Britain 4%, Italy and Spain 1%.
Substantial increase in profits
Consolidated profit for the year experienced a massive rise by 41.6% to CHF 387.1 million (273.4). This steep increase in profits surpassed the forecasted figure by far. Both business operations and the overall investment sector contributed to this result. As in the previous year, net investment income increased once again by a substantial 20% to about CHF 8 billion (6.65). Reported revaluation reserves (after deduction of deferred taxes) amount to CHF 6.5 billion, thus increasing 43.8%.
Assets under management rose by 65.5% to CHF 192.2 billion in 1999.
Rise in claims paid
Claims paid increased significantly by 26%. Reasons for this development are in particular additional benefits in the occupational employee benefits sector and substantial pure endowment benefits that became payable.
Operating expenses increased 22% to CHF 2.2 billion (1.84). This is the result of new companies acquired in 1999, a large product volume abroad as well as comprehensive preparations in view of the turn of the millennium and the introduction of the Euro. The cost factor in the life sector rose from 9.8% to 10.4%. On the other hand, however, the combined ratio in non-life business fell to 101.8% (104.1%).
Increased assets and enlarged equity capital base
Total assets increased to CHF 154.6 billion (117.5), thus rising by 31.6%. The equity capital base amounts to approximately CHF 11 billion. This was achieved while taking into consideration hybrid capital that was raised in 1999.
The number of staff rose by 29% to 11 119 employees as a result of the acquisition of various companies.
Resolutions proposed at the annual general meeting
The Board of Directors will propose the payment of a dividend of CHF 11 per share at the general meeting. Furthermore, it will recommend that Gerold Bührer, Member of the Corporate Executive Board of Georg Fischer AG, be appointed as a new Member of the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors currently comprises 13 members and will be under the chairmanship of Andres F. Leuenberger as on June 9, 2000. He will succeed Ernst Rüesch, who will retire as at the general meeting.
1st quarter 2000: marked increase of assets under management
Assets under management in the investment sector increased markedly in the first quarter 2000. They amounted to CHF 225 billion (+17.5%) at the end of March. Insurance operations also experienced a rise. In foreign business, this even amounts to more than 20%. Fund business in particular shows a great amount of potential for the future. Swiss Life / Rentenanstalt expects a substantial development of its activities and thus another positive result for the 2000 financial year.