Giant German financial services provider Allianz saw its net profits for the first three months of 2006 grow by 38% against the previous year - something it attributed to strong gains in life insurance and banking.

Provisional figures from the Munich-based group show an increase in revenues of 4.9% to roughly E30 billion compared with the first quarter of the previous year. Operating profit is expected to increase to approximately E2.7 billion from E1.9 billion and quarterly net income to approximately E1.8 billion from 1.3 billion.

Allianz says that due to benign capital markets, it has already realized in the first quarter of 2006 a disproportionate part of its capital gains target for the year 2006. Dresdner Bank and parts of the life insurance business have benefited from this positive environment. There has also been an absence of significant claims from natural catastrophes.

Allianz will publish its full quarterly report on May 12.