Arbuthnot shares rally on strong end to year
Shares in Arbuthnot Banking rallied in morning trading on Wednesday, after the 184-year old company said full-year profits would come in at the upper end of expectations.
Arbuthnot said period-end customer loan balances had increased by 31% year-on-year in 2019, while deposits where ahead 22%.
In addition, it saw “good” franchise growth the fourth quarter, and as a result, full year pre-tax profits were now likely to be “towards the upper end of the range of market expectations”.
Looking ahead, the bank added that the UK's uncertain political situation, which had led to a number of loan deals being delayed during the third quarter, had since improved.
“Following the decisive election result, the group has noticed an increase in the level of confidence in its markets and the pipeline across all business divisions has begun to improve,” the bank said in a trading update.
As at 1000 GMT, shares in Arbuthnot were up 9% at 1,085p, having earlier touched 1,100p.
Shore Capital – Arbuthnot’s broker – said the bank was “one of the fastest growing lenders among the peer group of UK specialist lenders".
“The company guides full-year 2019 pre-tax profit towards the top end of market expectations, which we see at £6.8m on a reported basis. The business enters 2020 with a more confident outlook.”
Arbuthnot will publish results for the year to 31 December on 26 March.