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Guernsey records surge in fund services business during Q1 2006

Funds under management and administration in Guernsey have hit a new high of GBP 111.4bn, with a record inflow of GBP11.3 billion (11.3 per cent) in Q1 2006.

The announcement by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission follows last week's news that the total value of deposits held with Guernsey banks reached a record GBP 85.6bn at the end of March.

Figures released this week show that the funds record of GBP 111.4bn at the end of March represents an increase during the quarter of GBP 11.3bn or 11.3% from the GBP 100.1bn at the end of December 2005 - the previous high - and a rise of GBP 35.8bn or 47.4% year-on-year.

Peter Niven, the Chief Executive of GuernseyFinance, the island's promotional agency for the finance industry, said: 'The figures reflect the market conditions but primarily highlight how Guernsey continues to be a jurisdiction of choice for fund promoters. The island's 'open for business' attitude - reflected in the flexible and innovative regulatory framework - is providing an ideal platform for an already experienced fund industry'.

'Members of the industry are reporting that growth levels show no sign of slowing down and that in fact since the end of March there have been unprecedented levels of business. Indeed, the recent volatility in the markets is providing an opportunity for further moves into alternative investments, in particular hedge funds and funds of hedge funds, as well as private equity and real estate, all of which are showing tremendous growth.'

Funds under management and administration grew by GBP 11.3 billion (11.3%) over the quarter ended 31 March 2006 to reach a total of GBP 111.4 billion.  Over the year as a whole, values increased by GBP 35.8 billion, an increase of 47.4%.

Within these totals, Guernsey domiciled open-ended funds grew by GBP 5.3 billion (10.9%) over the quarter and by GBP 17.2 billion (47.5%) over the year as a whole to reach a new record      total of GBP 53.5 billion. Closed-end funds also grew, with increases of GBP 2.7 billion (8.8%) over the quarter and GBP 10.3 billion (43.6%) over the year as a whole, to reach GBP 33.8 billion, also a new record.

Non-Guernsey schemes, for which some aspect of management or administration is carried out in the Bailiwick, increased by GBP 3.3 billion (16.0%) over the quarter and by GBP 8.3 billion (52.6%) over the year to reach a new high of GBP 24.0 billion.

By the end of March 2006, a total of 42 Qualifying Investor Funds had been approved since launch of the scheme on 7 February.

Peter Moffatt, Director of Investment Business at the Guernsey Financial Services Commission, said: 'New fund approvals continue to run at record levels.  There is a continuing flow of inquiries, from those with an established track record of domiciling their international funds in Guernsey.  Demand from new promoters to set up here, attracted by the quality of Guernsey's service providers and in recognition for pragmatic regulation has also increased significantly.'

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