AMP New Zealand reports financial results and provides update on 2019 priorities

14 February 2019

AMP New Zealand reports financial results and provides update on 2019 priorities

AMP Financial Services New Zealand (AMP New Zealand) has today reported its FY 18 financial results. FY 18 results reflect the split between retained and sold businesses.

AMP New Zealand wealth management:

AMP New Zealand’s wealth management business reported operating earnings of $57 million, which is broadly unchanged from FY17 primarily supported by earnings growth in advice and positive net cashflows.

Operating earnings were offset by lower wealth management income resulting from a decline in assets under management (AUM) margin. AUM decreased slightly (3%) to $11.6 billion largely reflecting unfavourable investment market conditions.

AMP’s KiwiSaver Scheme continues to grow with $5.1 billion in funds under management, a slight increase from FY 17. FY 18 controllable costs were largely flat at $35.6 million.

Blair Vernon, AMP New Zealand’s Managing Director, said: “Despite challenging market conditions, we continued to deliver on our commitment to provide high-quality advice and services to support our customers through the country’s most extensive and diverse network of financial advisers.

“In 2019, we will continue to prioritise the separation of AMP’s life insurance and mature business to Resolution Life. The separation will create an opportunity to establish and grow wealth management as a standalone business.”

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Performance against key measures:

Claims paid to support customers:

In FY 18, AMP New Zealand customers received $233 million in claims payments, including $107 million in life insurance, $25 million in trauma and $29 million in income protection claims. AMP KiwiSaver Scheme members accessed $108 million to help fund their retirement.

High levels of conduct and compliance:

In April 2018, AMP New Zealand was an industry leader in announcing the immediate conclusion of its offshore adviser development programme as part of an ongoing commitment to promote and support appropriate and transparent practices across the financial services industry.

AMP New Zealand’s strong focus on conduct and culture is also reflected in its work to establish an industry-leading position to address issues relating to commissions and replacement business practices to protect the long-term interests of customers.

General insurance:

In FY 18, AMP New Zealand customers received $72 million in general insurance claims.

Cashflows:

FY 18 net cashflows decreased to $89.6 million, primarily driven by higher KiwiSaver cash outflows, including $62.5 million in first home withdrawals as AMP New Zealand helped 2,270 AMP KiwiSaver Scheme members to buy their first home.

KiwiSaver is a key growth engine for the wealth management business. AMP New Zealand is a large KiwiSaver provider with approximately 10% of the total KiwiSaver market as at 30 September 2018 and around 225,000 KiwiSaver customers. The average member balance in the AMP KiwiSaver Scheme increased to $22,778 as at 31 December 2018, compared to the industry average of $17,130 (as at 31 March 2018).

AMP New Zealand wealth protection:

As at 1 January 2019, AMP New Zealand ceased selling AMP life insurance to new customers ahead of the sale of the business to Resolution Life. Existing customers’ policy terms and conditions are unchanged as a result of the transaction.

Experience and lapses:

Experience losses of $13 million were due to a one-off reinsurance capital loss and adverse lump sum claims in FY18. Lapse performance remained strong at 11.9 per cent as a result of an ongoing emphasis on lapse management.

Total annual premium income (API):

API was stable year on year at $343 million.

2019 priorities:

Mr Vernon noted:

“In 2019, we are substantially focused on the separation of AMP Life and New Zealand wealth management, which will include the repatriation of significant information technology and support services designed to deliver better outcomes for customers.

“The separation will establish AMP New Zealand’s wealth management business as a standalone business unit with a mandate to accelerate business growth.

“Given the focus on separation, AMP has deferred IPO consideration until separation completion.

“We are also focused on continuing to support advisers to respond to the unprecedented period of change occurring in our industry, which reflects our unwavering belief that the provision of sustainable access to advice is critical for all New Zealanders and their long-term financial wellbeing.

“At the same time, we continue to promote and support appropriate and transparent practices across our industry and seek to maintain our leadership position in terms of advice and conduct standards.

“As part of the regulators’ review of the New Zealand life insurance industry we expect to receive our individual report from the FMA/RBNZ soon, which we will thoroughly review to address any further actions to continue to protect the interests of our customers.”

Other key highlights for AMP New Zealand include:

Building financial capability:

  • AMP New Zealand’s Managing Director, Blair Vernon, launched a series of free financial capability building videos through social media to promote positive conversations about managing money effectively. Topics included budgeting, planning and goal setting.
  • AMP’s team of dedicated workplace advisers conducted 7,491 individual conversations and led 120 building financial capability group presentations for thousands of employees in their workplaces all over New Zealand to help more Kiwis take control of their money.

Enhanced digital offering for customers:

  • AMP New Zealand launched new tools to help AMP KiwiSaver Scheme members make active choices about their fund selection and retirement outcomes, including the AMP KiwiSaver Scheme Calculator, Alex the Chatbot, AMP’s Fund Selector, and KiwiSaver personalised videos. Alex the Chatbot responded to 5,520 customer questions via amp.co.nz.
  • AMP New Zealand made improvements to online forms and annual statements and provided regular updates to the My AMP App, which enables members to track their KiwiSaver journey.

AMP in the community:

  • AMP New Zealand proudly partnered with the Key to Life Trust to help change the way New Zealanders think, act and feel about mental health and suicide. Through the partnership, AMP got behind the I AM HOPE tour – a wonderful initiative led by mental health advocate and 2019 New Zealander of the Year Mike King to combat and reverse New Zealand’s rate of suicide.
  • AMP New Zealand also teamed up with social enterprise Support Crew to further help customers at claim time. Support Crew makes it easier for people to ask for help and for others to co-ordinate their response. Anyone can use the free online platform to easily co-ordinate meals and support for family and friends in need.
  • AMP New Zealand continued to support the Move Over Cancer challenge, an initiative created to fundraise for the Pinc & Steel Cancer Rehabilitation Trust. The Pinc & Steel Cancer Rehabilitation Trust was founded and developed by an AMP Scholarship recipient, Lou James. It is committed to supporting those affected by any type of cancer through assisting them with treatment and recovery.
  • AMP New Zealand became the first financial services provider in New Zealand to adopt the Living Wage. Being an accredited Living Wage Employer means that everyone working at AMP, direct or contracted, receives a minimum of $20.55 per hour – significantly higher than the minimum wage. AMP New Zealand believes all New Zealanders should be empowered to live with dignity and be able to realise the benefits of working hard, which is why AMP New Zealand is proud to be part of the Living Wage Aotearoa movement and to support the great work it does to focus attention on this critical issue.
  • AMP New Zealand also received a certification that recognises our genuine focus on being a diverse and inclusive workplace for people of different genders and sexualities – the Rainbow Tick.
  • In its twentieth year, AMP New Zealand awarded $170,000 to 22 talented Kiwis through the AMP Scholarships to help them achieve their diverse dreams and to support communities all over New Zealand and beyond. Through AMP Scholarships, AMP New Zealand has given more than $2.4 million to help over 300 everyday Kiwis.

Discover some of the ways we supported our customers and the community in 2018

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