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Julius Baer Group’s assets under management (AuM) rose to CHF 175 billion per end of April 2010. This represents an increase of 14% vs. year-end 2009, or 5% vs. the year-end 2009 AuM of CHF 167 billion pro forma for the inclusion of ING Bank (Switzerland) Ltd (‘ING Bank’). Total client assets increased to CHF 266 billion.
The AuM increase was supported by a positive market performance, whilst the Swiss franc currency translation impact was neutral, with the effect of the increase in the value of the US dollar balancing the impact from the weakening euro. Net new money inflows showed a positive trend compared to the second half of 2009, albeit at an annualised pace still slightly below the Group’s medium-term target. The continued solid contribution from growth markets was partially offset by the impact from the changing regulatory environment in the core European countries and by the exit from the US client business, which is now in its final phase. Based on the solid client pipeline in growth markets in particular, the Group still expects to attract net new money this year at a pace in line with its medium-term net new money target.
The gross margin started improving from the level achieved in the second half of 2009. The further tightening of interest rate spreads had a limited impact, whilst client activity recovered somewhat, although overall remaining at relatively subdued levels. Due to selective incremental investments related to business initiatives, the cost/income ratio (excluding ING Bank restructuring and integration costs) for the first four months of 2010 was somewhat higher than for full year 2009. The integration of ING Bank is expected to be completed by the end of May 2010.
The Julius Baer Group continued to manage its balance sheet, including its bond portfolio, conservatively and maintains a solid capital base. The BIS tier 1 ratio of the Julius Baer Group stood at approximately 21%.
The detailed financial results for the first half of 2010 will be published on 21 July 2010.