Merchant banking group Close Brothers has announced a good performance in the 13-week period ending 31 October, with continued strong profitability across all three divisions.
The banking division delivered a good performance in the first quarter, with loan-book growth and stable margins.
The loan book increased 1.4% in the period to £7.0bn, driven by good growth in property and premium finance, while the asset and motor finance loan books remained broadly flat.
Managed assets rise to £9.5bn
The FTSE 250 company said the bad debt ratio remained in line with the last financial year, and it had not seen any significant change in credit performance or trading conditions.
The bank’s Winterflood division, which provides access to securities and related services to retail brokers, asset managers and institutional investors, benefited from continued retail investor trading activity.
Meanwhile the asset management division continued to see strong net inflows and positive market movements, with managed assets increasing 6.5% to £9.5bn and total client assets growing to £11.7bn.
“We achieved a good performance in the first quarter and, at this early stage, remain well positioned for the remainder of the financial year,” the company said in a statement.