Axa, Europe's second- biggest insurer, on Thursday posted a 2 percent drop in first-quarter revenue on a comparable basis, hit by significant declines in business in France, Italy and the United Kingdom.

The insurance group generated revenue of 27.92 billion euros ($39 billion) in the three months to March 31, a figure which remained flat year-on-year on a reported basis.

The average first-quarter revenue expectations from four analysts was 28.818 billion euros.

Life and savings new business on an annual premium equivalent (APE) -- an industry measure used to iron out market volatility -- was down 44 percent in Italy, 4 percent in France and 17 percent in the United Kingdom.

Axa's life and savings revenue was down 4.9 percent to 15.92 billion euros overall in the first quarter.

For now, the year is looking just as we expected in February, so there is no change in outlook, Axa Deputy Chief Executive Denis Duverne told journalists in a conference call.

In February, Axa said the improved economic outlook should help the insurer raise profits.

Duverne said Axa did not have any additional figures on the impact of Japan's earthquakes and nuclear crisis on top of an estimate before tax of at least 100 million euros given at the end of March.

(Reporting by Astrid Wendlandt; Editing by Erica Billingham)