Close Brothers has seen assets under management rise by 3% to £8.5 billion over the five months to the end of December, the group said in a trading update.
Its banking division is continuing to increase its profitability, Close said, with its loan book growing by 6% to £4.4 billion, up from £4.1 billion at the end of July. Although the net interest margin was lower than in its previous financial year, this was offset to an extent by a further decrease in the bad debt ratio.
Close said low trading volumes have hit the performance of its securities division with its subsidiary Winterflood reporting a fall in the number of share deals executed compared to the same period last year.
The statement said: ‘The group is well positioned for the remainder of the 2013 financial year. The banking division continues to see solid prospects for growth and asset management remains on track to move into profitability during the course of this financial year. Challenging trading conditions continue to impact Winterflood's performance although it remains well positioned for any market recovery.’
Close is due to report its half year results for the six months to the 31 January on 12 March. In early morning trading, the group’s shares were broadly flat, down 3p or 0.31% at 972p.