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Guernsey funds grow nearly GBP9 billion in Q1

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The total value of funds business in Guernsey grew by GBP8.7 billion (3.3%) during the first quarter of the year.

New figures from the Guernsey Financial Services Commission (GFSC) show that the first quarter growth follows a drop of just more than GBP10 billion in the final quarter of last year and has taken the total net asset value of funds under management and administration in the Island to GBP270.1 billion at the end of March 2012.

This represents growth of GBP6.4 billion (2.4%) year on year.

Fiona Le Poidevin (pictured), Deputy Chief Executive of Guernsey Finance – the promotional agency for the Island’s finance industry, says: “It is very pleasing to see that the depreciation in the value of our funds business during the final quarter of last year was almost completely recovered during the first three months of 2012. Looking at the figures, we can see that there was an increase in fund values across the board but the vast majority of the growth can be attributed to a number of closed-ended and non-Guernsey schemes launching during the quarter.

“What I am hearing from the funds sector is that much of this business is coming from managers who have used Guernsey in the past and are providing repeat business. This demonstrates confidence in Guernsey as a jurisdiction and in particular, the experience and expertise of our service providers. The fact that it also comes in the face of generally gloomy economic conditions is very positive but we must also be conscious that external events, such as developments in the Eurozone, will continue to have an impact on our business.”

The new figures from the GFSC show that Guernsey domiciled open-ended funds reached a net asset value of GBP55.8 billion at the end of March 2012, which was an increase of GBP0.5 billion (0.9%) during the quarter but down GBP1.8 billion (3.1%) year on year.

The Guernsey closed-ended sector was valued at GBP123.9 billion at the end of March – up GBP4.8 billion (4%) during the first three months of 2012 and up GBP9.1 billion (7.9%) compared to twelve months earlier.

Non-Guernsey schemes, where some aspect of management, administration or custody is carried out in the Island, grew by GBP3.4 billion (3.9%) during the quarter to reach GBP90.4 billion at the end of March 2012, which is GBP0.8 billion (0.9%) lower than the value at the end of March 2011.

Horace Camp, the new Chairman of the Guernsey Investment Fund Association (GIFA), says: “It is encouraging to see this growth in the value of Guernsey funds business during the first quarter of the year. The fact that this is largely the result of new business coming to the Island is a major vote of confidence in the standards of our fund administrators, custodians and support services. The general economic malaise, particularly in the Eurozone, does mean that we need to be cautious but this has been a promising start to the year.”

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