Lump sums buoy Sun Alliance

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The Independent Online
SUN ALLIANCE'S UK life insurance business suffered a modest decline in regular premium sales last year but compensated with a 71 per cent leap in single premium (lump sum) receipts to pounds 556m.

New annual premiums in the UK slipped from pounds 75.5m to pounds 74.9m, with mortgage business falling from pounds 19.8m to pounds 16.5m. Jim Jewell, sales and marketing director for Sun Alliance Life, said the results represented an excellent achievement in a difficult year.

Worldwide, Sun Alliance's income from new regular premiums was pounds 14m ahead at pounds 129m while single premiums were 71 per cent higher at pounds 615m.

London and Manchester, the smaller life and pensions group, was hit by its decision to shed many of its poorer quality tied agents. New annual premium sales from tied agents fell 41 per cent to pounds 14.4m, contributing to an 18 per cent decline in the group's annual premium total to pounds 41.4m.

The group was buoyed by its single-premium business, which almost doubled to pounds 220m. The largest contribution came from the pensions division, where single premiums were up 152 per cent to nearly pounds 150m, L and M having won pounds 103m of managed fund business on the back of good investment performance.

London and Manchester is taking on a pounds 30m development in the City of London that will include a 97,000 sq ft department store for Marks & Spencer, sited opposite the retailer's successful food store on Moorgate.

L and M recently rebought the site for pounds 17.5m, having sold it for pounds 75m in 1989. The development will include 186,000 sq ft of offices which are to be let separately.

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