Close Brothers Group plc (LON:CBG) today issued its trading update relating to the third quarter from 1 February 2019 to 30 April 2019. All statements in this release relate to that period unless otherwise indicated.
Group and divisional performance
The group delivered a solid performance in the period. The Banking division has performed as expected in current market conditions, while our market facing businesses continued to experience lower activity levels.
In Banking, we remain focused on maintaining our margins and our prudent underwriting, and continuing to invest in our businesses for the long-term.
The loan book increased by 1.5% in the quarter to £7.5 billion (31 January 2019: £7.4 billion), predominantly driven by Commercial and Property, and is up 3.6% year to date.
The bad debt ratio has remained low with continued strong credit performance across the business, and the net interest margin year to date has remained broadly in line with the 2018 financial year.
In Asset Management, we continue to invest in people and technology to support our long-term growth. Although client activity remained subdued in the period, managed assets increased to £10.9 billion at 30 April 2019 (31 January 2019: £10.3 billion), supported by positive market movements and continued net inflows. Total client assets increased to £12.5 billion (31 January 2019: £12.0 billion).
Winterflood continues to focus on maximising its trading opportunities in all market conditions. Although trading volumes remained low, the division delivered solid profitability in the quarter, performing broadly in line with the first half.
We expect a solid result for the full financial year.