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Discretionary funds drive Brewin Dolphin

Michael Millar

LONDON (ShareCast) - Independent wealth manager Brewin Dolphin (Other OTC: BDNHF.PK - news) saw its funds under management rise 3.4% in the last year, driven by its discretionary investment arm. Total (Other OTC: TTFNF.PK - news) managed funds reached £24.0bn in the year to the end of September, up from £23.2bn last year. The growth was entirely driven by discretionary funds, which rose to £15.6bn from £14bn in 2010. This offset an 8.7% fall in advisory funds to £8.4bn. Adjusted profit before tax was £39.6m, a 1% increase on the previous year, while basic earnings per share were 12.4p, an increase of 1.6%. However, the firm was hit by a number of one-off costs, including a £6m levy from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. This was 10 times the levy in 2010, and related largely to the failure of financial services firm Keydata. When one-off costs are factored in, pre-tax profits fell 27% to £21.9m. The firm will pay a final dividend of 3.55p per share, bringing the total dividend for the period to 7.1p in line last year's figure. Executive chairman, Jamie Matheson, said market sentiment remained fractious with the euro zone debt crisis and the possibility of another recession causing concern. "However it is your Board's belief that long-term equity investments will continue to have an important role in the wealth management market," he said.