L&G gath­ers mo­men­tum af­ter record year of prof­its

Western Mail - - BUSINESS -

FI­NAN­CIAL ser­vices gi­ant Le­gal & Gen­eral has said it is on course for a record year of prof­its, driven by what it called “for­mi­da­ble mo­men­tum” in its core business di­vi­sions.

The group, which em­ploys 2,000 in Cardiff, pointed to areas such as its re­tire­ment unit, which has de­liv­ered to­tal sales of £6.2bn in the year to date thanks to strong per­for­mances in the UK and US pen­sion mar­kets.

In re­tail, L&G said it has “sig­nif­i­cantly out­per­formed the mar­ket”, with UK in­di­vid­ual an­nu­ity pre­mi­ums up 93%, equiv­a­lent to a 14% mar­ket share.

Life­time mort­gage ad­vances have risen 71% to £900m in the UK and the com­pany said it ex­pects the coun­try’s age­ing de­mo­graphic to make the mar­ket “in­creas­ingly at­trac­tive”.

Boss Nigel Wil­son said: “L&G is on track for a record year for earn­ings and prof­its.

“Our core business di­vi­sions are gen­er­at­ing for­mi­da­ble mo­men­tum.”

L&G’s in­vest­ment arm saw net inflows of £38.1bn to the end of Oc­to­ber, while L&G Cap­i­tal gen­er­ated £256m of gross pro­ceeds.

Gen­eral In­sur­ance gross writ­ten pre­mi­ums are up 13% to £305m as the firm ramps up di­rect-to-con­sumer sales.

On Wed­nes­day the in­surer off­loaded its ma­ture sav­ings business to Swiss Re for £650m as it looks to plough funds into “at­trac­tive growth op­por­tu­ni­ties”.

Mr Wil­son added: “With yes­ter­day’s an­nounce­ment of the sale... our business is now well-po­si­tioned and fo­cused on the prod­ucts and ge­ogra­phies where we see op­ti­mum growth and cul­tural align­ment.”

In Au­gust, the group posted a leap in half-year prof­its, helped by changes in life ex­pectancy rates and a strong per­for­mance in its cor­po­rate di­vi­sion.

The FTSE 100 firm booked a 27% in­crease in op­er­at­ing profit to £988m in the pe­riod af­ter a “greater than ex­pected mor­tal­ity ex­pe­ri­ence” al­lowed it to re­lease £126m.

> Nigel Wil­son group CEO of Le­gal & Gen­eral

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