18 Aug 2012

Absence of natural disasters good for QBE

5:53 am on 18 August 2012

QBE Insurance has reported a rise of 13% in net profit for the first half of the year due to an absence of major natural disasters.

The Australian insurance company reported a net profit after tax of $US760 million ($A722 million), which it said reflects the reduced cost of large individual risk and catastrophe claims.

The ABC reports the company also benefitted from premium increases of more than 5 per cent across its global businesses.

Chief executive officer John Neal said insurance conditions have returned to normal after a couple of very unusual years.

Aside from less natural disasters, QBE also managed to avoid financial disasters, with its net investment income rising 35% to $US686 million ($A652 million).

However, the company's share price had fallen more than 6% to $A12.82 by 10:48am (AEST) on Friday.