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Allianz posts big rise in profit after year-earlier charge


(Reuters) — Germany’s Allianz on Friday posted a big rise in first-quarter net profit, rebounding after taking charges a year earlier for a U.S. funds scandal.

The quarterly jump in profit of 329% fell short of analyst expectations, however, and was damped in part by weakness in Allianz's asset management division, which saw lower revenue and operating profit.

For the group as a whole, net profit attributable to shareholders was €2.032 billion ($2.24 billion), compared with €474 million a year earlier. The figure fell short of a €2.327 billion consensus forecast.

The boost in profit — most pronounced in its property/casualty division — marked a return to business as usual for Allianz, which has been trying to restore its reputation after one of its funds units, Allianz Global Investors, was dogged with a fraud case in the United States that resulted in $6 billion in settlements and fines last year.

“We can be proud of our operating profit and bottom line,” CEO Oliver Baete said.