SYDNEY, AAP – Suncorp will stop underwriting travel insurance for Australians in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic to focus on its bigger core operations.

It will also cease offering personal loans in favour of expanding its more profitable home lending business.

“The financial impact of these exits is immaterial,” Suncorp said in a statement on Tuesday.

Its travel insurance portfolio of about $6 million in total premiums is now being run-off.

Current travel insurance policyholders aren’t affected by the decision.

The travel sector has been under pressure since international borders were shut due to the spread of the virus.

The banking and insurance group reported cash earnings of $509 million for the first half of 2020/21, up 39.5 per cent.

Investors will be reward with a fully franked interim dividend of 26 cents per share.

Suncorp said the overall impact of COVID-19 on its results was “broadly neutral” because business interruption claims were mostly offset by lower claims frequency.

CEO Steve Johnston indicated the good news should continue into the second half of the financial year.

“Suncorp enters the second half of FY21 in good shape, with momentum starting to build across our businesses and our balance sheet remaining very strong,” he said.