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QBE on the move

QBE Insurance (ASX: QBE) is reported to have placed its Pitt Street Sydney headquarters (HQ) on the market. According to the Australian Financial Review the insurer has put an asking price of $40 million on the building.

The plan to sell up and move to a more modern office has been underway for some time, with the insurer already leasing space from Mirvac Group (ASX: MGR) in its Chifley Square development. The sale of the HQ is all part of CEO John Neal’s strategy to drive efficiencies and cost savings throughout the company’s sprawling insurance operations.

The cost cutting drive has certainly done wonders for investor sentiment towards QBE over the past few months with its shares outperforming the S&P/ASX 200 Index (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) with a gain of 25.5% compared with the index’s gain of 22%. Mirvac has also managed to outpace the index returning 29%, however as the chart below shows, property rival Stockland (ASX: SGP) has struggled to keep up, returning just 11%.

qbe

Source: Google Finance

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Motley Fool contributor Tim McArthur owns shares in QBE Insurance.

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