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ING’s 2nd-quarter underlying net profit rises 38.8% to EUR 2,023 million


• Second-quarter total net profit rises 29.9% to EUR 2,014 million
-Earnings per share increase 29.2% to EUR 0.93 from EUR 0.72 in second quarter 2005
-First-half underlying net profit rises 33.2% to EUR 4,000 million
-Interim dividend increases from EUR 0.54 to EUR 0.59 per share, half of the total dividend for 2005

•Focus on value creation and pricing discipline leads to healthy returns
-Risk-adjusted return on capital after tax from banking rises to 21.9% in first half
-Internal rate of return on new life insurance business increases to 13.9% in first half
-Value of new life business rises 18.7% in second quarter to EUR 229 million

•Continued focus on execution and cost control leads to enhanced efficiency
-Cost/income ratio of banking operations improves to 62.3% in second quarter from 67.1%
-Expenses/life premiums improves to 12.57% in first half, expenses/AUM improves to 0.77%
-Restructuring at Nationale-Nederlanden leads to 3.2% decline in expenses at Dutch insurance business

Chairman’s Statement

“Over the past two years we have worked to reposition ING to deliver value for shareholders by balancing top-line growth with higher returns. At the same time we have strived to improve execution, including customer satisfaction and cost control. Our efforts continue to show results, confirming the positive trend we have seen over recent quarters. The combination of improved returns and continued growth means ING has enhanced its earnings base. In the second quarter, underlying net profit rose 38.8% to a record EUR 2,023 million as the momentum from the first quarter continued,” said Michel Tilmant, Chairman of ING Group.

“The strong results were achieved against a backdrop of challenging market circumstances, including turbulent equity markets, rising interest rates and flattening yield curves. However, the quality of our credit portfolio remained sound and earnings continued to benefit from realised gains and revaluations. Top-line growth remained solid and operating expenses are under control. The cost/income ratio of the banking operations improved to 62.3% and expenses at the Dutch insurance business declined as restructuring takes hold.”

“Returns continued to increase as business units focus on capital efficiency and pricing discipline. The risk-adjusted return on capital after tax for the banking operations reached 21.9% for the first half, supported by a further improvement at ING Wholesale Banking. The internal rate of return on new life insurance sales rose to 13.9%, reflecting sales of products with higher margins. Our growth engines continued to perform well, with strong growth at Insurance Asia/Pacific and ING Direct. Robust sales of retirement services and annuities contributed to a 36.6% increase in the value of new business in the U.S.”

“Looking forward, interest margins are expected to remain under pressure at our banking operations in the second half of the year, however, our life and wealth management businesses generally benefit from moderate increases in interest rates. Economic fundamentals remain sound and we see no sign of a deterioration in our credit portfolio, so risk costs are expected to be well below historical norms in the second half. Nonetheless, we will maintain our focus on efficiency and improving the execution of the business fundamentals, while continuing our efforts to strengthen compliance and controls. Overall, ING is well positioned to capture growth opportunities going forward, and we are confident in our ability to continue to create value for our shareholders.”

Underlying profit excludes divestments and special items as specified in Appendix 2. P&L figures compare 2Q2006 with 2Q2005. Returns such as RAROC and IRR are calculated YTD.

Analyst presentation: 10 August, 11:15 am CET, ING House, Amsterdam. Presentation & webcast

Analyst call: 10 August, 4 pm CET. Listen in:
+31 20 796 5332 (NL)
+44 20 8515 2303 (UK)
+1 303 262 2140 (USA)

Certain of the statements contained in this release are statements of future expectations and other forward-looking statements. These expectations are based on management’s current views and assumptions and involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results, performance or events may differ materially from those in such statements due to, among other things, (i) general economic conditions, in particular economic conditions in ING’s core markets, (ii) performance of financial markets, including developing markets, (iii) the frequency and severity of insured loss events, (iv) mortality and morbidity levels and trends, (v) persistency levels, (vi) interest rate levels, (vii) currency exchange rates, (viii) general competitive factors, (ix) changes in laws and regulations, and (x) changes in the policies of governments and/or regulatory authorities. ING assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking information contained in this document.


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