LONDON May 8 Anglo-South African insurer Old
Mutual on Thursday reported growth in funds under
management for the first quarter that outpaced market forecasts,
supported by buoyant financial markets.
The company said funds under management rose 7 percent over
the period to 288.4 billion pounds ($448.91 billion), with
rising markets adding to the impact of net client cash inflows
of 3.9 billion pounds.
Analysts had predicted funds of around 277 billion pounds.
Group Chief Executive Julian Roberts said all the group's
main businesses contributed positive flows despite uncertainty
surrounding a regulatory shake-up in Britain of financial
Britain's Retail Distribution Review (RDR), introduced this
year, seeks to prevent misselling and improve financial advice
by replacing commission-based sales with a fee-based system.
Old Mutual said the UK savings market has been "disrupted"
while financial advisers adjusted to the new system and
contributed to a 10 percent drop in the net client cash flow via
its UK platform.
"We believe (this) is related to RDR, to advisers getting
their act together under the new regime... We see that slowly
getting sorted out ," Roberts said.
"It is something that has affected the first quarter and
will get better as the year progresses."
Old Mutual's sales were unchanged from a year earlier at 269
million pounds, the company said, below consensus forecasts of
around 272 million pounds.
The firm is seeking to expand its UK asset management
business and achieved a major coup during the quarter with the
hiring of high profile fund manager Richard Buxton from rival
Schroders to run its UK equities team.