First Property Group reveals 13 per cent drop in profits

Commercial property fund management company First Property Group has revealed a 13 per cent decline in pre-tax profit for the six months ended September 30th.

Commercial property fund management company First Property Group has revealed a 13 per cent decline in pre-tax profit for the six months ended September 30th.

Profit before tax (from continuing operations) totalled £2.21m, down from £2.54m the same period the previous year, while assets under management (AuM) dropped 7.2% to £347m (2011: £374m) over the same period.

More positively, net assets totalled £17.84m, up 6.3% from £16.79m at the end of September 2011, while the cash balance rose 31.2% over the year from £8.97m to £11.77m.

The dividend per share was maintained at 0.33p.

In a statement the group said: "Funds under management have performed well in a difficult market environment. The total pre-tax income return earned by our funds under management in Poland was 21.1% on an annualised basis. The total pre-tax income return earned by our funds under management in the UK, which are un-geared was 6.5% on an annualised basis."

Chief Executive Ben Habib added: "The difficulties in the Eurozone continue to overhang all European capital markets, although the recent announcement by the ECB of its outright monetary transactions has somewhat stabilised markets.

"Our earnings have been impacted by these macro-economic conditions, most notably as a result of a weakening Euro and our decision last year to suspend investment purchases in Poland. We are now in the process of acquiring a number of new properties on behalf of FOP, which should result in earnings growth in due course."

The share price fell 7.41% to 18.75p by mid-afternoon.

NR

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