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UPDATE 1-AMP profit falls 3 pct as restructure costs wipe out earnings gains
August 20, 2014 / 10:27 PM / 3 years ago

UPDATE 1-AMP profit falls 3 pct as restructure costs wipe out earnings gains

(Adds earnings details)

SYDNEY, Aug 21 (Reuters) - Australia’s AMP Ltd reported a 3 percent drop in first-half net profit on Thursday as an increase in underlying profit was erased by restructuring costs.

Australia’s third-biggest retail funds manager reported underlying profit of A$510 million ($473 million) for the six months to June 30, compared with A$440 million the previous year.

Including one-off items such as restructuring costs, interim net profit fell to A$382 million from A$393 million.

AMP Chief Executive Officer Craig Meller said in February that the group would halt an earnings decline at its wealth management protection unit in 2015. The unit, whose products pay part of a person’s salary if they are unable to work, was hit last year by more claims and a pull-out from policies as people cut costs amid a weaker economy.

On Thursday, the company said its wealth protection unit grew operating earnings by almost half to A$91 million for the six-month period, from A$64 million. In a statement, Meller said the unit was “stabilising...however we have more work to do.”

AMP Bank delivered a first-half profit of A$42 million, up 10 percent on the previous first half, while cashflows into the Australian wealth management business fell to A$1.1 billion, from A$1.4 billion previously.

The company declared an interim dividend of A$0.125 per share, up from A$0.115 previously. (1 US dollar = 1.0775 Australian dollar) (Reporting by Byron Kaye; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

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