NETHERLANDS - Aegon, the Netherlands-headquartered insurer and asset manager, has today announced it has seen a drop in its overall revenue generating investments at the end of September and reported a net loss for the third quarter.

Subsequent to Aegon's third quarter results report this morning, the Dutch ministry of finance also announced Arthur Docters van Leeuwen, current chairman of the Holland Financial Centre and former chairman of the of the financial markets watchdog AFM, and Karla Peijs, Aegon board member, will become representatives at Aegon for the Dutch government.

The insurer, which is now backed by €3bn in Dutch government capital and had to agree to the two commissioners being appointed, said underlying earnings in the Netherlands were down 31% to €74m as a charge to meet guaranteed returns on certain group pension contracts and the cost of modifying unit-linked insurance products offset higher investment income during the quarter.

The group added group pension business in the Netherlands was "sluggish" and sales had declined significantly in the third quarter, pushing down the value of new busines to €8m, though earnings from its pensions and asset management business were said to be "broadly in line with last year".

Presenting its third quarter results today, the company stated: "A charge for guaranteed returns on group pension contracts (€35m) was offset by higher investment income (€24m) and a one-time release of accruals (€9m). "

Underlying earnings in the UK, meanwhile, declined 39% to £28m, primarily because of the impact of lower equity and bond markets on fee charges in Aegon UK's pension business.

Earnings from Pensions & Asset Management in the UK were 34% lower, following lower fund-related charges.

The group also said its operating expenses in the UK had increased after more investments in the business and higher employee pension expenses.

While Pensions & Asset Management earnings in the US declined by $9m, as a result of lower financial markets and an increase in restructuring expenses, Aegon said its pension business in Central and Eastern Europe showed continued growth and pension fund members have topped two million.

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