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Guernsey funds finish 2007 with a flourish

Funds in Guernsey grew another GBP13.7bn (8.3 per cent) in the final three months of 2007 despite continued market turbulence during the quarter.
That took the total value of funds under management and administration in Guernsey to another record high of GBP178.2bn at the end of December - up GBP48bn (37 per cent) during the year.

The most eye-catching results came in private equity asset class where values increased by GBP6.0bn (19 per cent) during the quarter and GBP13.6bn (66 per cent) year on year to reach GBP34bn at the end of 2007.

'This is an excellent set of results,' says Peter Niven, chief executive of GuernseyFinance - the promotional agency for the Island's finance industry. 'The figures are particularly impressive considering the significant market turbulence that we saw during quarter three of last year carried over into the final three months of 2007 and the start of the New Year. Given these conditions, the strength of business flows has held up very well and in all honesty surpassed expectations. In particular, the growth in private equity business provides yet further evidence of the Island's strength in this asset class.'

Graham Hall, Partner of law firm Carey Olsen, adds: 'This continued and significant growth in private equity is testament to the fact that fund promoters are increasingly recognising Guernsey's first class infrastructure - including fast-track approval processes - and wealth of expertise in this asset class. The Island is the jurisdiction of choice for private equity.'

A breakdown of the figures shows that Guernsey closed-ended funds grew by GBP8.8bn (13 per cent) during the quarter and GBP27.9bn (57.5 per cent) over the 12 months to reach GBP76.4bn at the end of December - a new record. Guernsey open-ended funds rose by GBP4.2bn (6.4 per cent) over the last three months of the year and GBP12.6bn (22.2 per cent) during the year to reach GBP69.2bn, also a new record.

Non-Guernsey schemes, for which some aspect of management and administration is carried out in Guernsey, increased by GBP757m (2.4 per cent) over the quarter and by GBP7.5bn (30 per cent) year on year to reach a new high of GBP32.6bn.

Since the inception of Qualifying Investor Funds in February 2005, a total of 173 had received consent or approval from the GFSC by the close of last year - 80 of those during 2007.

On 1 February 2007, a registered closed ended fund regime was introduced. During the last quarter of 2007 there were 27 such funds that received consent from the GFSC, taking the total to 82 at the close of the year.

Niven adds: 'These figures mean that we start 2008 in excellent condition and can look forward to passing the seminal GBP200bn mark in the very near future.'

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