Aberdeen AM net outflows in quarter hit £10.5bn

Aberdeen Asset Management, the Scottish asset manager headed by Martin Gilbert, saw net outflows of £10.5bn in the three months to the end of December, as Gilbert warned that “a further £2.4bn is scheduled to be withdrawn from lower-margin portfolios during the current quarter”.

“Investor sentiment had been improving steadily in the early part of the quarter, but stalled following
the US presidential election result, with investors putting asset allocation decisions on hold,” Gilbert, pictured, said in a trading statement this morning.

And while “growing interest” in a number of Aberdeen’s investment strategies is likely to “continue to be masked, in the short term, by significant withdrawals by a small number of clients”, Gilbert added, he said Aberdeen “overall remains in good shape, we have a strong balance sheet, a global client base
and wide range of capabilities to meet the needs of investors.”

The £10.5bn in outflows was said to have been driven by two large redemptions amounting to £4.2bn of active equity mandates from a UK wealth manager and a sovereign wealth fund that Aberdeen said it had already flagged up in its 2016 results statement, “alongside anticipated structural outflows from certain institutional clients”.

Rationalised US fixed income biz

Also in the trading statement, Aberdeen said its decision, taken in October, to rationalise its US fixed income business by focusing on its US credit and total return bond strategies had contributed to a £2.2bn reduction in assets under management in the three month period, to £302.7bn at the end of the year. A further reduction of around £1bn is expected in the early part of 2017, Aberdeen said.

To see the trading update on the London Stock Exchange website, click here.  At 11am London time Aberdeen’s shares were down by around 3.6%, at 248.6p.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Helen Burggraf
Helen Burggraf is the editor of International Investment. A US-trained journalist, she has worked in Rome, New York City and London, covering everything from the fashion and retailing industries to the global drinking water and water-treatment sector, private equity, and most recently, the international cross-border financial services/advice industry.

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