LONDON Nov 14 Prudential, Britain's no.
1 insurer, reported a 13 percent rise in profit, narrowly
beating market expectations, thanks to continued strong growth
in its flagship Asian markets.
Prudential made a new business profit of 1.74 billion pounds
($2.77 billion) in the first nine months of the year, it said on
Wednesday, surpassing the 1.68 billion pounds expected by
analysts in a company poll.
Profit in Asia, where Prudential makes nearly half its
sales, was up 15 percent, against increases of 10 percent and 17
percent in the United States and Britain respectively.
Prudential is focused on further expanding its presence in
Asia as rapid economic growth across the region fuels booming
demand for savings and insurance products.
The company has sworn off big acquisitions since a failed
$35.5 billion attempt in 2010 to buy AIA, its biggest Asian
rival, but remains on the lookout for small-scale deals.
Earlier this month, it agreed to pay $590 million for the
insurance arm of Thailand's Thanachart Bank.
Prudential shares were down 0.6 percent by 0824 GMT, in line
with the broader FTSE 100 share index. The stock is
still up 34 percent since the start of the year, outpacing a 24
percent rise for the STOXX 600 European insurance share index