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Westpac Group Australia warns of A$1.3b hit after loss on life insurance business sale

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Westpac Group Australia warns of A$1.3b hit after loss on life insurance business sale

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 A view of the Westpac bank headquarters in Sydney, May 2018.

A sign on the Westpac bank headquarters, Sydney.
Photo: AFP

Westpac Group Australia says it will take a A$1.3 billion hit to its full-year bottom line with a big loss on the sale of Westpac Life Insurance in addition to other costs.

It expected the sale of its Australian life insurance business to Japan’s Dai-ichi Life in August 2021 would result in a loss of A$1.1b, with other expenses, writedowns and an increase in provisions further adding to the one-off charge.

The one-time expenses included a A$129 million write down of assets associated with restructuring.

In addition, the New Zealand business was expected to report a one-time second-half expense of A$9m. Its core earnings were expected to be A$117m for the full year.

The banking group said second half revenue was also down A$68m as a result of remediation provisions related to wealth products and to New Zealand.

An Australian court ordered Westpac Banking Corp to pay A$113m in penalties for multiple compliance failures across its businesses, after hearing the last of the six cases filed against it by the country’s corporate watchdog in April.

The company was expected to announce its full-year result on 7 November.

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