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Premier blames Brexit for slower fund flows

Premier blames Brexit for slower fund flows

Premier Asset Management has reported an increase in profits and assets but saw slower fund flows at the beginning of the financial year, which it blamed on a "volatile and difficult" environment for the investment industry.

In its annual results published this morning (November 29) Premier reported assets of £6.9bn for the year ending September 30, up from £6.1bn the previous year.

The group’s pre-tax profit also increased, growing by 38 per cent, from £11.5m in 2017 to £15.9m this year.

But net flows had dropped slightly, down from £747m to £734m, despite Premier reporting 22 consecutive quarters of net positive flows.

Mike O'Shea, chief executive officer at Premier Asset Management, said trading in the first part of the current financial year had been more challenging as a result of the Brexit negotiations.

He said: "Anecdotal evidence suggests that retail investors are taking a wait-and-see approach and, as a result, fund flows have been slower in the first few weeks of the current year than they have been in recent months.

"Despite this, investment performance, particularly across our multi asset range has remained resilient on a relative basis."

Mr O’Shea said he is confident in a more difficult investment environment there will remain a strong demand for "good actively managed products", including multi-asset and single strategy funds.   

He said: "We remain a market leader for multi-asset investments and believe we have strengthened our future position in this area by the continued development of our multi-asset product range to include both multi-manager and directly invested multi-asset funds."

Mr O’Shea said the year had seen good financial results for shareholders, with the total dividend increasing by 28 per cent to 10.25p.

Mike Vogel, chairman at Premier Asset Management, said business conditions have continued to be challenging, with continued economic, political and investment uncertainty over the course of the year. 

He said: "We clearly do not know how this challenging environment will evolve, but we believe our active investment management approach is well placed to help investors over the longer term."

Mr Vogel said the group had continued to develop its product range, including promoting existing members of its UK equity team to manage the UK equity growth fund and launching a new "high yielding global equity income fund".

He said: "We believe that these developments will create further opportunities to attract fund flows over the coming years."