Operating expenses stay stable at $1.6bn

Aon’s brokerage in the UK dropped 8% in the third quarter of 2009, from $182m (£111.5m) in the same period in 2008 to $167m.

The mega-broker’s results showed a 2% decrease in total revenue, to $1.8bn. It attributed this to the effect of foreign currency fluctuations and a 69% decline in investment income.

Total operating expenses remained steady at $1.6bn.

The broker spent $99m on restructuring relating to last year’s acquisition of Benfield, compared to $54m in the prior year quarter.

But it claimed to have saved an estimated $68m in the quarter thanks to recent restructuring.

President and chief executive Greg Case said: “Our third-quarter results reflect solid operational discipline … despite difficult economic and industry conditions and a 69% decline in total investment income.

"We continue to make substantial investments across our businesses with the roll-out of our global risk insight platform and the introduction of Inpoint, our insurance carrier consulting business, as well as the addition of key talent in consulting.”

Case added: “As we invest in future growth opportunities, our 2007 and Aon Benfield restructuring programmes will continue to deliver additional cost savings, as we have achieved less than 40% thus far of the total $589m of estimated annual savings under these two programmes.

“Lastly, our balance sheet and strong cashflow provide significant financial flexibility to create shareholder value, as highlighted by the repurchase of an additional $125m of stock during the quarter.”