St. James’s Place dips with full-year losses

St. James’s Place dips with full-year losses

UK-based wealth manager St. James’s Place saw its shares dip in Wednesday trading, with latest figures reporting that full-year sales had swung to a net loss on account of the diminished value of the company’s investments and lower performance fees.

Despite growth in assets under management and an improved dividend, 2018 was disappointing

Even with the company attracting investors with a hike of its dividend to 20pc per share and announcing its assets under management had grown to £100 billion, figures for 2018 reveal an underwhelming year for the British firm.

The firm booked negative results with full-year pre-tax losses through December mounting to £84.6 million, which represents a considerable dip from a positive figure of £342.1 million on-year.

Despite the losses, the company were optimistic – and also reported some positive figures.

“I am pleased to report a good set of results for 2018, building on an exceptional outcome in 2017 and despite a difficult external environment in the last quarter of the year,” chief executive Andrew Croft said.

“It is pleasing to see a recovery in the global stock markets at the start of 2019 which, together with on-going net inflows during January and February have, at the time of writing, taken our funds under management to some £102bn.”

St James’s as a portfolio candidate

Since announcing its impressive dividend, the company has since announced a final dividend of 29.73p per share, which brings total dividends for the year to 48.22p, a 12.5% jump on-year.

Similarly, the company’s preferred measure of performance, EEV operating profit, saw a 9% improvement – to £1 billion. Gross inflows were also up to £15.7 billion, a growth of !.1 billion on-year.

The firm’s shares are currently trading down 3.54% or 34.6p since markets opened on Wednesday, down to 942.2p per share. Goldman Sachs have reiterated their ‘Neutral’ stance on St. James’s stock, while Deutsche Bank have reiterated their ‘Hold’ stance and Peel Hunt retained their ‘Add’ rating.