Fri, Mar 11, 2011 - Page 11 News List

Cathay Financial posts slimmer profits

By Kevin Chen  /  Staff Reporter

Cathay Financial Holding Co (國泰金控), the nation’s largest financial services provider, said yesterday it made a net profit of NT$1.21 billion (US$41 million) last month, down from NT$1.40 billion in January because of less working days in the month.

In the first two months of the year, however, Cathay Financial posted a net profit of NT$2.61 billion, compared with a net loss of NT$1.54 billion a year earlier, thanks to rising fee incomes from its banking unit, the company said in an e-mailed statement.

Based on the financial holding firm’s 10.15 billion issued shares, net profit for the first two months translated into NT$0.26 in earnings per share, the Taipei-based company said.

Among Cathay Financial’s major business units, Cathay United Bank (國泰世華銀行) posted a net profit of NT$1.14 billion last month. The lender saw profits hit NT$1.99 billion, or NT$0.38 per share, in the first two months.

That was followed by Cathay Life Insurance Corp (國泰人壽), the group’s flagship unit and the nation’s largest life insurer, which made a profit of NT$60 million last month and NT$450 million in the first two months, company data showed.

“Owing to rising sales in high-yield products, Cathay Life saw its first-year premiums grow by an industry-leading 66.1 percent to NT$7 billion last month,” the statement said.

The company’s non-life insurance unit, Cathay Century Insurance Co (國泰產險), made a net profit of NT$40 million last month and NT$170 million in the first two months, the statement showed.

On Tuesday, Cathay Financial said its non-life insurance unit had obtained permission to set up a branch in Hanoi, Vietnam, after it opened a branch in Ho Chi Minh City in December.

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