Suncorp chief executive and managing director Michael Cameron has stepped down in what the banking and insurance giant has called an “opportunity for the company to enhance its performance”.

Mr Cameron led Suncorp for almost four years through to this year’s $725 million sale of its Australian life insurance business, but chairman Christine McLoughlin said Monday it was time for a change.

“This will provide the opportunity for the company to enhance its performance in a highly competitive and challenging external environment as Suncorp seeks to strengthen its core businesses,” Suncorp said in a statement.

Ms McLoughlin said Mr Cameron had made “a considerable contribution”.

“I would like to thank Michael for his leadership in accelerating our digital capability and in driving a customer-first culture,” she said.

Mr Cameron will stay on in an advisory role until August 9, two days after Suncorp announces its full-year results.

Chief financial officer Steve Johnston has been appointed acting CEO, with deputy chief financial officer Jeremy Robson stepping up to CFO on an interim basis.

Ms McLoughlin said Suncorp will consider external CEO candidates, both domestic and international, and Suncorp is targeting the appointment of a permanent boss “in the latter part of the year”.

Suncorp in February reported a 45 per cent decline in first-half profit to $250 million following a jump in weather-related claims, along with a more than 50 per cent increase in regulatory compliance costs.

Suncorp said Monday its FY19 cash earnings are currently in line with market expectations and Mr Cameron he was proud of what he had been achieved.

“Suncorp now has the digital foundations in place to enable it to be nimble and to seize opportunities,” he said.

Shares in Suncorp were down 1.4 per cent at $13.705 at 1112 AEST, still up 8.5 per cent this calendar year to almost erase 2018’s decline.