St James Place sees new business

St James’s Place has seen a 20% year on year growth in new business over the first six months of 2014, despite losing nearly 10% in profit due to regulatory changes.

St James Place sees new business


The bank’s new business for the first half of the year reached £447.9m, up from £379.9m at the start of 2013, which chief executive David Bellamy said was reflective of a “growing market” for advice in the UK.

Funds under management also rose by nearly a fifth, reaching £47.6bn from £39.9bn, up 19% over the last twelve months and 7% since the start of the year.

However, pre-tax profit fell 8.5% to £82.4m from £90.1m over the first six months of last year, which the company put down to a change in accounting requirements which means the Financial Services Compensation Scheme levy must be immediately recognised in full.

It said the results anticipate a full year levy of £6.9m, whereas the 2013 half year results only reflected a six month charge of just £2.4m.

Total single investment rose by a fifth to £3.92bn from £3.23bn, while net inflow of funds under management also rose by nearly a quarter to £2.44bn.

New business profits rose by 20% to £181.3m from £152.4m in 2013.

Bellamy said: “As I have commented previously, we believe that there is a growing market for trustworthy, personal advice in the UK marketplace and these results once again demonstrate that fact.

“The scale, growth and maturity of our funds under management has resulted in a growing underlying post tax result in recent years, which has supported the significant increase in dividends.”

He added that he expected the growth to continue throughout the rest of the year, which had led the company's board to agree an increase in the interim dividend of 40%, which it plans to replicate in the full year dividend.

In June, the company completed its acquisition of advisory firm The Henley Group.

First mooted in February, the deal represented the company’s first foray into an overseas market, and will enable it to service the British expatriate market in a number of Asian cities.

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