Manulife Financial reports profit down from year ago after oil and gas hits

TORONTO – Manulife Financial Corp. (TSX:MFC) saw its third-quarter profit fall compared with a year ago as it was hit by losses related to its oil and gas investments.

The insurance company said Thursday it booked $220 million in charges related to its investments as losses in oil and gas were offset in part by gains related to fixed-income redeployment, favourable credit experience and other assets.

Overall, Manulife said it earned a profit of $622 million in its latest quarter or 30 cents per diluted share. That compared with a profit of $1.10 billion or 57 cents per diluted share for the same quarter a year earlier.

The results for the most recent quarter included a charge of $285 million due to changes in actuarial methods and assumptions and a net gain of $232 million related to the direct impact of equity markets and interest rates.

Manulife said its core earnings for the quarter amounted to $870 million or 43 cents per share, up from $755 million or 39 cents per share a year ago.

“We delivered strong operating results in the third quarter, including double-digit growth in insurance sales and positive net flows in our wealth and asset management businesses,” chief executive Donald Guloien said in a statement.

Manulife is a Toronto-based insurance and financial services company with some C$883 billion in assets under management.

It operates as Manulife in Canada and Asia, and under the John Hancock banner in the U.S.