May 11, 2017 / 7:07 AM / 8 months ago

Finland's Sampo reports higher Q1 profit on Nordea, investments

HELSINKI, May 11 (Reuters) - Finnish financial holding company Sampo reported on Thursday a rise in first-quarter profit on a stronger profit contribution from Nordea Bank as well as better investment returns.

Profit before taxes grew 3 percent to 430 million euros ($468 million), topping the 415 million expected by analysts in a Reuters poll.

Sampo said it expects its property and casualty insurance business to reach a full-year combined ratio in the range of 87 and 90 percent. It had previously forecast a ratio of below 95 percent. A lower ratio indicates better profitability.

However, Sampo added that low interest rates create a challenging environment for reinvesting its fixed income securities.

Sampo owns P&C insurer If, life insurance firm Mandatum Life, a fifth of Nordea and a stake of more than 40 percent in Danish insurer Topdanmark.

$1 = 0.9194 euros Reporting by Jussi Rosendahl and Tuomas Forsell; editing by Jason Neely

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