Despite Park Row reducing costs from £11.2m in 2007 to £7.9m in 2008, in its financial results for 2008 Royal Liver said operating loss for Park Row was £5.8m.
However, its online protection business Progress saw its market share increase to over 5 per cent, with new business premiums up 19 per cent on 2007.
The statement said: “In line with most other national IFA distribution businesses throughout the UK, 2008 was a very challenging year for Park Row. The economic downturn adversely impacted on core mortgage and protection business and there was a significant loss of confidence in savings and investment products.
“Park Row lost a number of registered advisers during 2008, which, when added to the general economic woes in the sector, reduced group turnover.”
Royal Liver group chief executive Steve Burnett says: “2008 was a year of unprecedented turmoil and change in the financial markets and although the Society was not immune from these challenging conditions; our prudent and vigilant approach to managing our capital has meant that we were able to mitigate the worst of the impact.
“Mutuality remains our bedrock and we are confident that our values will put us in a strong position to emerge from the downturn with renewed vigour, in a much changed market that has lost trust in financial institutions that are solely focused on shareholder returns.”