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IAG New Zealand’s gross written premium leaps 18.8% and insurance margin rises to 20.8%

Insurance / news
IAG New Zealand’s gross written premium leaps 18.8% and insurance margin rises to 20.8%

The New Zealand arm of Australian insurance giant IAG says its gross written premium climbed above $2 billion in the first half of its 2024 financial year, reflecting premium rate increases in response to inflation pressures and reinsurance costs.

Gross written premium in NZ shot up 18.8% to NZ$2.015 billion in the six months to December 31 2023, up from NZ$1.696 billion in the first half of the previous financial period.

IAG is NZ's biggest general insurer and includes the AMI, State and NZI brands. It says the gross written premium growth in the NZ business was in response to higher perils, inflation pressures and reinsurance costs.

IAG New Zealand’s Chief Executive Amanda Whiting says having a sustainable and “strong” insurance business remains a key focus for the insurer as more extreme weather events and growing risks continue to occur.

“For instance, the 2023 North Island floods and Cyclone Gabrielle events are still having a profound impact on our communities, and we are working hard to resolve our customers' claims as quickly as possible.”

She says IAG has now received a total of over 52,000 claims from both the North Island floods and Cyclone Gabrielle.

Of those, 99% of motor, 99% of contents, and 96% of home claims have now been settled, with IAG’s insurance payouts topping $1 billion, making it the most expensive climate disaster the insurer has had to tackle after the Canterbury earthquakes.

“A strong insurance sector, with the financial strength to meet the needs of New Zealanders is just one part of the equation, which is why we will continue to work closely with local and central government to make a real difference around flood resilience,” Whiting says.

“To keep New Zealanders safe, and insurance available and affordable, we must reduce flooding and natural hazard risk through good planning decisions, investment in protection and resilience measures, and where necessary, through relocating people away from at-risk properties.”

IAG NZ reported an insurance profit of A$204 million in the first half of the 2024 financial year, up from A$136 million in the previous corresponding period – an A$68 million increase.

The local division of the Aussie insurer says this translated to a reported insurance margin of 20.8%, up from the 15.2% insurance margin reported in the first financial half of the 2023 year.

The insurance margin increase in New Zealand reflected a combination of “higher earned premium, lower natural perils costs, and stronger investment income.”

Strongest in nine years

IAG’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Nick Hawkins says the group’s gross written premium growth was the strongest it had been in nine years and was up 12.5% to A$7.9b across the group.

“The margins and underlying claims ratios in Australia and New Zealand improved, and we are on track to meet our FY24 [full-year 2024] financial guidance,” he says.

Reported insurance margin for the group in the six months to December 31 widened to 13.7%, up from 8.5% while net profit after tax came to A$407 million, down from A$468 million in the previous corresponding period.

Hawkins says in the first half of the 2024 financial year, IAG settled more than A$6 billion in around 730,000 claims across Australia and New Zealand.

This was 10.1% higher than the $5.45 billion spent in claims in the first half of the 2023 financial year.

IAG’s board has determined to pay an interim dividend of 10 cents per share, 40% franked, up from 6 cents per share in the first half of the 2023 financial year.

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You're welcome IAG.  


Tower also upped their guidance recently. It's probably a good thing as touchwood no further natual disasters and they can simmer down for any further insurance hikes over the coming years.


We really need to start shopping around for insurance and create some competition. Its standard in the UK to check your getting a good deal on all your insurance each time it renews. I do the same here. In the 3 years I've had home insurance, I've saved around 1200$ vs my renewal from the current insurer. 
They always try to sell you on all the extra stuff they they insure or extra value, but if you dont own $15000 of fine art or whatever other thing it is they try to push then you are over insuring, and paying for it. 
When I call the current insurer to tell them I'm moving and even when I tell the new insurer I'm just moving companies, they are always shocked. Which suggests to me nobody else is doing this sort of thing.

Come on NZ we can put these guys under a bit of pressure.  


This is one of the problems with competition in the insurance industry.

It's so damn price competitive in normal times that raising premiums becomes extremely hard so they rise less than they need to. And when a disaster hits - bang - big rises in one go which become significant inflationary pressures. And usually at a time where inflationary pressures are already abundant.

It's not supposed to work this way. But hey. We want competition, right?

Edited: I have a 30+ year career in banking and insurance. My comment was an industry wide comment on the insurance market from a macro economic perspective about how 'competition' doesn't always work the way many expect it too.


The risks from weather events are starting to skyrocket. The results will be less people getting insurance which in turn will mean even higher premiums. Really you need to do a risk analysis on your home in particular. For starters drop the contents insurance completely, I remember this effectively doubles your premium. When you add up the cost of your old junk it certainly doesn't equal the value of the house.


We could do what the yanks do in 'tornado alley'. They build houses they only expect to last 20 years. Keeps building costs low. Cheap to insure and cheap to replace. Life insurers give premium discounts if you have an approved 'tornado bunker'. ;-)


They made $400+mill in profit and raised their margin by 5% despite all the weather events...