Canada-based life insurance firm, Manulife Financial has reported a net profit of C$3.1bn for the full year of 2013, up by 73%, compared to C$1.8bn during the comparable period earlier year.

For the fourth quarter ended 31 December 2013, the company’s net income stood at C$1.29bn, up by 20%, compared to C$$1.07bn during the corresponding period last fiscal.

Manulife Financial president and CEO Donald Guloien said, "Our 2013 results show another significant improvement in core earnings and net income, strong capital, decreased risk and improved return on equity. Our plan is delivering.

"Our U.S. operation has turned around nicely, and along with our very strong Asian and Canadian businesses, leads to a very well-balanced portfolio," Guloien added.

"Insurance sales were slightly lower than what we would have liked, but with better margins; wealth sales were simply outstanding, driving assets under management to the 21st consecutive quarter of growth, to $599 billion."

Full year insurance sales declined by 13%. In Asia, insurance sales decreased by 16% to $1bn with reported growth in most territories being more than offset by lower sales in Japan as a result of product changes.

In Canada, insurance sales slashed by 14% driven by normal variability in the company’s Group Benefits business.

The company said that John Hancock Life sales declined 6% reflecting its actions to reposition its new business mix to products with increased margins and more favorable risk profiles.