Prudential seeks £9bn surplus control

16 January 2007

The UK's Prudential insurance company is looking to claim up to £9 billion in surplus assets currently sitting in its life funds, the Financial Times reports.

According to the newspaper, the major insurer is currently looking to negotiate with policyholder representatives over the ownership of the funds, which are surplus to the amounts that policyholders are contractually entitled to.

Observers suggest that gaining control over the money - also known as the 'inherited estate' - would give Prudential significantly more financial flexibility.

Commenting on the situation to Forbes News, a spokesperson for Prudential denied that a decision had been taken on staking a claim over the assets.

"It would be beneficial to have further clarity on the status of the inherited estate, but no decision has been taken, and none will be taken unless there are clear benefits to both policyholders and shareholders," the spokesperson said.

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