26 October 2012 6:41am
Suncorp will consider paying special dividends and share buybacks as options to return surplus capital to shareholders, the insurance and banking group's chair, Ziggy Switkowski, told the annual meeting in Brisbane yesterday.
"We will not hoard capital," he said.
However, Switkowski told the annual meeting, "the current level of balance sheet gearing is about right at around 20 per cent to 25 per cent of targeted capital", which means any return of capital will have to wait on a lift in operating earnings from efficiency drives across the business.
The company is expecting these efforts to deliver, judging from the tenor of the talk at the meeting of shareholders on what improved productivity might mean for owners of the company's shares rather than holders of the company's insurance policies.
"There is plenty more gas in the tank," Patrick Snowball, Suncorp's CEO told the annual meeting.
"We've only just scratched the surface in terms of the benefits of simplifying the business and there's a lot more work for us to do yet."