Growth in fund servicing is "remarkable", says GuernseyFinance

Fund assets serviced in Guernsey grew by a further GBP8.9bn (5.7 per cent) in the three months to the end of September, taking the total value of funds under management and administration to GBP164.5bn - a year on year increase of GBP44bn or 36.5 per cent.

The growth in fund asset numbers has taken place despite significant market turbulence during the past quarter and in spite of the strength of sterling, which has effectively deflated the value of funds reported in US dollars or linked currencies.

'This is a very impressive set of results,' says Peter Niven, chief executive of GuernseyFinance, the promotional agency for the island's finance industry. 'Guernsey's funds industry has been particularly buoyant in the past couple of years and so it is not surprising that with such a solid foundation it has proved resilient in the face of a host of pressures at play during the quarter.

'However, given the nature of these factors and notably the significant market turbulence, the strength of this performance is truly remarkable. It is testament to the robust nature of the island's funds industry that as others have struggled during the credit crunch, despite a dip in our growth, as some funds held back from coming to market, we have nonetheless continued to make exemplarily progress.'

Guernsey-domiciled closed-ended funds grew by GBP5.2bn (8.4 per cent) during the quarter and by GBP23.9bn (54.7 per cent) since September 2006 to reach GBP67.6bn, while open-ended funds increased by GBP2.5bn (4 per cent) over the quarter and by GBP11bn (20.4 per cent) year on year to reach GBP65bn.

The assets of non-Guernsey schemes for which some aspect of management or administration is carried out in the island rose by GBP1.2bn (3.9 per cent) over the three-month period and by GBP9.1bn (39.5 per cent) over the previous year to GBP31.9bn.

Since the launch of Qualifying Investor Funds in February 2005, a total of 130 QIFs have received consent or approval from the regulator, the Guernsey Financial Services Commission, exactly half of them in the 12 months to the end of September.

Following the introduction of Guernsey's registered closed-ended fund regime on February 1, 2007, 55 such funds had received consent from the GFSC by the end of September and a further 12 since.

'These figures illustrate how we have continued to experience strong flows of business despite the credit crunch,' says Gavin Farrell, a member of the Guernsey Investment Funds Association executive and marketing committees and a partner at law firm Ozannes. 'With such a large amount of work still coming in, I am confident that this will remain the case throughout the end of this year and into the first quarter of 2008.'

Niven adds: 'Comments like this from industry professionals reinforce what I have been saying over the past few months - Guernsey's funds industry is in great shape and as we move into 2008, the future seems very positive.'

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