Investec posts slight drop in earnings

The company says a weaker rand played a significant role in its profit slump.

Investec says a weaker rand played a significant role in its profit slump. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - Investec posted a 0,7 percent decline in first-half earnings on Thursday after a weaker rand negatively impacted profit.

The Johannesburg-based investment bank and asset manager said diluted headline earnings edged lower to 14.8 pence a share in the six months to end September, from 14.9 pence last year.

"The currency did play the major factor in these results," Chief Executive Stephen Koseff said.

The rand has lost 20 percent against the dollar so far this year.

Investec, which reports in pounds because it is also listed in London, had flagged that its adjusted earnings per share would drop as much as 10 percent due to its struggling Australian unit where it has cut 80 jobs.

About a tenth of its revenue last year was from Australia, where it is restructuring to focus on bigger businesses.

Net interest income, the measure of earnings from lending, totaled £318.4 million, a NINE percent decrease from a year earlier. Income from fees and commissions rose five percent to £484.9 million.

Impairments on loans and advances fell to £83.1 million from £115.6 million despite an increase in bad debt charges in Australia.