Shares in Close Brothers, the UK merchant banking group, rose more than 5% on Thursday after reporting trading at all three of its divisions had surpassed expectations during its financial first half.
At the same time, the company announced its current finance director was leave the company and that the search for a new CFO was underway.
The company said its banking division had "continued to generate strong returns and profit growth" during the five months to 31 December, with a "stable" net interest margin.
Bad debts remained low and its underlying credit performance was consistent with the previous financial year. The loan book was up 2.6% over the period to £7.1bn.
The company's asset management division delivered "strong" net inflows and benefitted from rising markets during period with manage assets increasing 8.2% to £9.6bn
Total client assets increased to £11.7bn in the period, up from £11.2bn in the prior period ending 31 July 2017.
Close Brothers' third division Winterflood, the European market maker, "continued its good performance with trading activity remaining high".
The company added: "Given our performance year to date, we are confident of delivering an increase in profit in the first half, and remain well positioned for the full 2018 financial year."
Finance chief departs
The company also announced on Thursday, the departure of group finance director Jonathan Howell (left), who will leave in November after ten years at the company.
Preben Prebensen, group chief executive, said: "Jonathan has made a very substantial contribution during a period of significant growth and development, driving the group's financial strategy and bringing sound judgement and a sharp focus on shareholder value."
The company said the search for Howell's successor would involve both internal and external candidates.
Shares in Close Brothers were up 5.38% to £15.29 in late-morning trade on the London Stock Exchange.
Picture courtesy of Close Brothers' website