Group cash earnings of $509 million, up 39.5 per cent on the prior corresponding period (pcp), driven by higher earnings across all businesses: Insurance (Australia), Banking & Wealth, and Suncorp New Zealand.
Group net profit after tax (NPAT) of $490 million, down 23.7 per cent on the pcp (which included the $293 million gain on sale of Capital S.M.A.R.T and ACM Parts businesses in October 2019).
Fully franked interim dividend of 26 cents per share, reflecting a payout ratio of 65 per cent of cash earnings.
Strong top line growth in the Consumer and Commercial portfolios in both the Australian and New Zealand insurance businesses, higher investment returns and prior year reserve releases.
Banking & Wealth delivered a strong net interest margin (NIM), up 8 basis points (bps) over the half to 2.04 per cent.
COVID-19 impact broadly neutral on the 1H21 result, with increased provisions and risk margins to cover potential Business Interruption claims largely offset by reduced claims frequency.
Strong capital position maintained with Group excess common equity tier 1 capital (CET1) of $1,026 million after adjusting for dividends; Group will continue to reassess its capital requirements taking into account the needs of the business, the economic outlook, and any regulatory guidance.
Three-year plan focused on delivering for customers, further digitising and automating the core businesses, driving growth and generating sustainable returns above the through-the-cycle cost of equity.
#Group CEO Commentary
Suncorp Group CEO Steve Johnston said the 1H21 result demonstrates that the focus on the core businesses and digitisation is yielding positive shareholder results.
“Over the past year, we have refocused our strategy, continued to implement the ongoing regulatory program of work, improved our customer service, reinvigorated our brands, further digitised our business and become more efficient,” Mr Johnston said.
“I am proud of how the Group has delivered on these commitments and been true to our purpose in a challenging year.
“We are seeing improved momentum in our Australian and New Zealand insurance businesses as evidenced by strong top-line growth, while our Bank is also delivering improved performance.”
“Suncorp will keep advocating for an urgent co-ordinated response from all levels of government to make our communities more resilient to natural disasters and ensure that insurance is affordable and accessible. We are calling on the Federal Government to invest in well-chosen infrastructure projects that can protect communities in the long-term and provide a kick-start to jobs in the short-term.”
“Suncorp enters the second half of FY21 in good shape, with momentum starting to build across our businesses and our balance sheet remaining very strong,” Mr Johnston said.
“The Group’s three-year plan addresses customers’ growing preference for digital and evolves how we work and serve our customers as technology changes.
“Most importantly, we are focused on delivering for our people, our customers, our communities and our shareholders.”