St James’s Place Shrugs Off Brexit; Inflows Reach $4 Billion

Updated on
  • Shares rise in London as fund flows continue into second half
  • Jupiter also reports funds flows post vote, shares climb

St. James’s Place Plc shrugged off the turmoil triggered by Britain’s vote on membership of the European Union as net inflows rose to a record. The shares rallied.

The wealth manager had 3.1 billion pounds of net inflows ($4.1 billion) in the first six months of the year, boosting assets to 65.6 billion pounds, the company said in a statement on Wednesday. New flows since the shock vote to leave the EU mean the company’s on track to meet its medium-term fund growth target of 15 to 20 percent, it said.

The shares climbed 3.8 percent to 917.5 pence in London, the highest since the day of the vote. The stock is still down 7.2 percent this year. The interim dividend was raised to 12.33 pence per share from 10.7 pence.

“Our business model is just working in this environment,” Chief Executive Officer David Bellamy said in a telephone interview. “We are seeing the same growth momentum and flows that we’ve always had but it’s just a bigger business now.”

The CEO said that while 70 percent of funds are in equities, less than 25 percent of clients’ money was invested U.K. shares, helping to contain any fallout from the referendum. The asset manager also announced changes to its funds offering including the introduction of a new Worldwide Income Fund managed by Investec Asset Management Plc’s Clyde Rossouw.

The firm replaced Aberdeen Asset Management Plc’s Hugh Young as the manager of its 1.3 billion-pound Far East fund after almost 15 years. First State Stewart Asia’s Alistair Thompson and Martin Lau will manage the fund, which is being renamed Asia Pacific, because it’s reducing its exposure to Japan.

Jupiter Fund Management Plc also reported net inflows Wednesday, sending the shares up 4.4 percent, the highest since the day of the referendum. While clients pulled money from their U.K. and European equity funds ahead of Brexit, the firm still had 600 million pounds of net new money in the first six months of the year. Assets were up 3.6 percent to 37 billion pounds in the period, boosted by sterling’s weakness.

Sign up to receive the Brexit Bulletin, a daily briefing on the biggest news related to Britain's departure from the EU.

CEO Maarten Slendebroek said Jupiter has also seen positive net inflows since the end of June, mainly into its strategic bond and absolute return funds. Emerging market portfolios also had a “very, very strong second quarter” which has proved to be the asset class to own through Brexit, he added.