Shares in Allianz Malaysia, main insurer of missing jet, extend decline

KUALA LUMPUR, March 12 Wed Mar 12, 2014 5:18am EDT

KUALA LUMPUR, March 12 (Reuters) - Shares in Allianz Malaysia, the lead insurer of the missing Malaysian Airlines jetliner, extended declines to fall 3.6 percent on Wednesday on concerns about the potential impact of insurance claims.

The company is a unit of Germany's Allianz which has said it is the main provider of insurance on the aircraft and the liabilities attached to the passengers and cargo.

The search for a missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner expanded on Wednesday to cover an area stretching from China to the Andaman Sea, with authorities no closer to explaining what happened to the plane or the 239 people on board.

Shares of Allianz Malaysia have lost 5.4 percent since the plane went missing on Saturday. Shares in the German parent company have dropped 1 percent this week.

Shares in Malaysian Airlines were unchanged on Wednesday. They have fallen 4 percent this week but have recovered ground from a drop of as much as 18 percent to a record low on Monday.

By comparison Malaysia's main stock index was down 0.5 percent on Wednesday and has lost 0.8 percent this week.

Etiqa Insurance and Takaful Bhd, the insurance arm of Maybank, is also an insurer covering Malaysian Airline's fleet of aircraft, a domestic newspaper has reported. Maybank shares slipped 0.8 percent on Wednesday and have lost 2.4 percent this week.

Local reinsurer MNRB Holdings, which local media has said is one of the reinsurers, fell 1.8 percent on Wednesday and has lost 3.8 percent this week.

Officials for Etiqa and MNRB did not respond to requests for comment.

Malaysia Airports Holdings, the operator of Kuala Lumpur International Airport where the Boeing 777 last took off, saw its shares fall 2.7 percent on Wednesday. They have dropped 5.7 percent this week. (Reporting by Yantoultra Ngui; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)