Internal revenue growth, which adjusts for currency and consolidation effects, amounted to 9.8 percent and was supported by all business segments. Total revenues increased by 7.9 percent to 30.5 (third quarter of 2017: 28.3) billion euros. Operating profit grew 20.6 percent to 3.0 (2.5) billion euros, mostly driven by our Property-Casualty business, which experienced lower claims from natural catastrophes, a better underlying claims development and a decreased expense ratio, as well as strong premium growth. An increase in assets under management (AuM) driven revenues and higher performance fees led to an increase in the operating profit from our Asset Management business segment. Our Life/Health business segment operating profit decreased slightly but remained at a good level. Net income attributable to shareholders was up 23.6 percent to 1.9 (1.6) billion euros, mainly driven by the increased operating profit.
Basic Earnings per Share (EPS) increased 12.0 percent to 13.42 (11.98) euros in the first nine months of 2018. Annualized Return on Equity (RoE) amounted to 13.8 percent (full year 2017: 11.8 percent).
Solvency II capitalization ratio amounted to 229 percent at the end of the quarter compared to 230 percent recorded at the end of the second quarter of 2018.
In the first nine months of 2018, operating profit grew 4.8 percent to 8.7 (8.3) billion euros, due to a higher underwriting result from our Property-Casualty business, as well as increased operating revenues (primarily AuM-driven) from our Asset Management business. Life/Health business segment operating profit declined slightly as a result of less favorable foreign currency translation effects and a normalization of the investment margin in the United States. Net income attributable to shareholders increased to 5.8 (5.4) billion euros: a negative impact from the sale of our traditional life insurance portfolio in Taiwan was more than offset by the increase in operating profit and lower income taxes.
Allianz completed its latest share buy-back program in September 2018 with a volume of 1.0 billion euros. All repurchased shares have been cancelled.
“During the first nine months of 2018 Allianz showed a strong performance across the board, now also supported by substantial productivity gains,” said Oliver Bäte, Chief Executive Officer of Allianz SE. “Especially in challenging times, customers are looking for a financially solid partner for their insurance and investment needs. Allianz has been that reliable partner year after year. And we are very confident to reach our targets also for this year.”