20 April 2017 – interim results
Following hot on the heels of a trading update on 13 April, interim results for the six months to 31 January have been released. Revenue for the period was up 2% to £304.2m (2016: £297.1m) but net fee income was down 3% to £35.4m (2016: £36.5m). Profit before tax was down 25% to £5.2m (2016: £6.9m). Basic earnings per share were down 31% to 10.7p (2016: 15.4p) and diluted earnings per share were down 29% to 10.5p (2016: 14.8p). Net debt as at 31 January 2017 was £27.9m (31 July 2016: £24.8m). The interim dividend was maintained at 6.0p. We continue to rate the shares as a BUY.