St. James’s Place reports robust fourth quarter flows and record funds under management

St James Place designed by Scott Brownrigg, Cirencester, Gloucester, UK.

St. James’s Place plc, the Cirencester-headquartered wealth management group, has reported net inflows of almost £2.3 billion in the last quarter of 2020.

At the end of the same quarter, funds under management were £129.3 billion, up eleven per cent over the year and a new record for the business.

Andrew Croft, Chief Executive, said: “In the final quarter of what can only be described as an extraordinary year for individuals, families, business and broader societies across the world, I am pleased to report that St. James’s Place delivered another robust set of new business results.

“Gross inflows for the quarter totalled £4.02 billion, representing growth of one per cent against the same period in 2019. For the year, gross inflows of £14.33 billion are just five per cent lower than 2019, which given the operating environment since March, bears testament to the resilience of our business and the determination of our entire community to support clients and each other through the global pandemic.

“We continued to achieve strong retention of client investments in spite of the unprecedented external conditions, resulting in net inflows of £8.25 billion, representing seven per cent of opening funds under management. This net investment, together with positive investment returns experienced by our clients, provided for year end funds under management of a record £129.34 billion, up eleven per cent over the year.

“Sensitive to the challenging external environment for many financial advice businesses across the UK, we decided to slow the pace of our experienced adviser recruitment activity and paused the intake of new ‘students’ to our Academy programme during the year. Despite this, continued strong adviser retention coupled with modest recruitment resulted in net adviser growth to 4,338 advisers.”

Earlier this month the wealth management company announced it would be making around 200 job cuts. At the time, Andrew Croft said: “To remain leaders in our market, it’s vital we’re an agile and dynamic business – flexing to the changing needs of the partnership and clients.

“Whilst in coming years we’ll continue to grow the investment in our business, we need to make focused decisions on where and how we use this resource. Making sure we have the right people focused on the right things.

“Over the coming months, we’ll be simplifying where we can, removing duplication of work, and stopping those tasks we no longer require.

“And unfortunately, this also means a loss of around 200 roles from across the SJP business. Wherever possible in the process we’ll look to redeploy people to roles where their skills are aligned. And where this isn’t possible we’ll provide support, guidance, and people to talk to.”