Nomura Clears Goal of Record 90 Tln Yen in Retail Assets

Nomura Holdings Inc. increased retail client assets to a record 90.3 trillion yen ($889 billion) in April, achieving a goal of Chief Executive Officer Koji Nagai two years ahead of schedule, thanks to Japan’s stock rally.

The country’s biggest brokerage added 6.5 trillion yen of assets under management last month, the biggest jump since Tokyo-based Nomura started compiling the data in 2002, company spokesman Kenji Yamashita said in a telephone interview today.

The increase underscores why securities firms are the biggest beneficiaries of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s stimulus policies as a surge in trading volume boosts brokerage commissions. Nagai, 54, pledged to increase the assets to 90 trillion yen by March 2016 in his first meeting with investors in September, a month after becoming CEO.

“Brokerages will continue to benefit from the boom in commissions as long as stock prices keep rising,” said Makoto Kikuchi, CEO at Myojo Asset Management Co., a Tokyo-based hedge fund advisory firm. “Individual investors, who have shunned stocks for a while, have come back to the market, taking risks for a return.”

Nomura had 67.3 trillion yen of the assets on Sept. 30. The company, which relies on domestic retail operations for about half of its pretax securities profit, posted its highest quarterly net income in seven years last quarter.

The Topix Securities and Commodity Futures Index has more than tripled in the past six months, the best performance among the 33 industry groups on the benchmark Topix, which has gained 71 percent. Nomura shares reached a 4 1/2-year high yesterday, before slipping 1.6 percent to 919 yen at 1:45 p.m. in Tokyo.

Banker Prizes

Nomura is seeking to boost the assets further by offering incentives to bankers to improve services. The firm this month selected the 20 best consultants among 6,800 based on a survey of 742,000 clients. It awarded trophies and cash vouchers for family travel, according to its website and Yamashita, who declined to comment on the amount.

Net income more than tripled to 82.4 billion yen in the three months ended March, the bank reported on April 26. Brokerage commissions climbed 39 percent to 125.7 billion yen.

Income from commissions for stock broking and investment trust sales rose 67 percent to 82.3 billion yen in the quarter, company figures showed. Nomura earned 100.6 billion yen in pretax profit from domestic retail operations in the year ended March, accounting for 52 percent of total securities income.

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