SUNCORP TAKES HUNDREDS OF FIRE CLAIMS

SUNCORP TAKES HUNDREDS OF FIRE CLAIMS

SUNCORP (ASX:SUN) has received about 400 NSW bushfire claims estimated to cost the insurer between $60 million and $70 million.

The group carries full-year natural hazard allowance of $565 million so is well covered in the event of this natural disaster, but there is risk things could get worse as the bushfire season is in its early stages as the storm season approaches.

Investors are slightly worried, with SUN down 0.6 per cent at $13.26 on what is a strong day for the banking sector.

Suncorp group CEO Patrick Snowball says assessors have been delployed to the affected regions.

“With the fires now contained, we can begin the task of helping customers re-build their homes and communities following these devastating bushfires,” says Snowball.

The bushfire update was part of the company’s required update on operations released to the ASX today.

Suncorp Bank CEO David Foster says lending growth continued due to strong branch distribution in growth regions complemented by customer acquisition through improved servicing of brokers.

“Home lending continues to benefit from investments in channel and geographic expansion to deliver broad-based growth across major national markets,” says Foster.

Bank impairment losses of $18 million for the quarter were within the bank’s medium-term expectation.

Gross impaired assets were reduced 7.7 per cent to $467 million as part of the planned runoff of the non-core portfolio. The residual balance of the non-core portfolio reduced by $340 million over the September quarter to $395 million.

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