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Legal & General operational cash bolsters dividend despite profit fall

Legal & General has raised its interim dividend by 25 per cent despite profits falling by 12 per cent in the first half of 2011 to £473m from £537m last year.

Group chief executive Tim Breedon says a 19 per cent increase in operational cash generation from £417m to £498m has allowed the firm to boost its dividend from 1.33p per share to 1.66p per share.

He says: “We remain confident in our business model and strategy. Our leading positions in UK savings, annuities, protection and asset management are delivering healthy returns for shareholders.

“Sales volumes continue to grow and we are developing attractive new businesses both in the UK and internationally.”

Individual annuity sales fell by 15 per cent from £61m in the first six months of last year to £52m this year. L&G says this comparison is skewed by a strong annuity market last year following the Government’s decision to increase the minimum retirement age from 50 to 55.

Operating profits in the savings investments business, which includes unit trusts and Isas, structured products, the investment platform business and uninsured Sipps, fell from £14m to £13m.

Total new business in savings investments grew by 8 per cent from £343m to £371m.



Europe suggests 14-day mortgage cooling-off period

A committee scrutinising the EU’s mortgage directive has resurrected the idea of a 14-day “cooling-off period” for borrowers after a mortgage offer has been made. Plans for a 10-day cooling-off period were considered by the European Commission when it first began to formulate its draft proposals, but it emerged in January that the EC was […]

Police drop probe on ex-SJP adviser

The City of London Police has dropped its investigation into former St James’s Place adviser Peter Carron, who was accused of misappropriating £4m worth of clients’ investments into his own businesses. In September, the FSA said Carron defrauded St James’s Place customers by advising them to invest in his own firms, Comment Technologies, Evaluate Technologies […]


Gold price soars to record high

The price of gold hit a new nominal record high of $1,715 (£1,045) a troy ounce this morning, according to the World Gold Council. Following the downgrade of the US’s credit rating, investors continued to pile into the traditional safe haven investment, which helped to push up the price by $59.20 when the markets opened […]

Unfinished business?

Pension specialist Fiona Tait gives an update on three big announcements from the 2016 Budget – Pensions Advice Allowance (PAA), the Lifetime ISA (LISA) and the pension dashboard. £500 Pensions Advice Allowance What’s new Under current rules it is possible to deduct an adviser charge from a defined contribution pension fund to pay for financial […]


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