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Sanlam UK records 65% drop in profit

South African financial services group Sanlam has reported a 65 per cent drop in net operating profit for its UK business during the first half of the year.

Sanlam UK, made up of Buckles, Merchant Investors, Principal and a minority stake in Nucleus, Intrinsic and Punter Southhall Group, saw net operating profit drop from £2.9m in the first half of 2008 to £1.02m for the same period this year.

Total net operating profit for Sanlam dipped 7 per cent from £105m last year to £97m from January to June this year.

The group’s financial statement says the level of assets under management and profitability of Principal and Buckles, of which it owns a 60 per cent stake, were in particular negatively impacted by the UK economic and financial market conditions.

It says: “The Sanlam UK businesses are experiencing the aftermath of the financial market crisis more severely than the South African based operations.

“Despite some recent improvement in sentiment and economic statistics, the first six months of 2009 has been characterised by continued economic uncertainty, rising unemployment, poor consumer confidence and depressed financial and housing markets.

“This had a particularly negative impact on the Punter Southall Group, Principal and Buckles, whose results are directly affected by investment market performance and business volumes.”



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