ICAP plc (IAP.L), the world’s leading interdealer broker, announces its trading update ahead of the close period for the year ending 31 March 2012.
Expectations for full year performance remain in line with guidance1 provided at our Interim Management Statement on 1 February 2012. ICAP expects to announce its preliminary results on 16 May 2012.
ICAP’s diversified business model underpinned its performance in the fourth quarter. In our voice business, there was a pickup in interest rate markets. Credit markets remain challenging, although there has been an increase in issuance. In commodities, oil and gas performed strongly. Performance on EBS, our electronic foreign exchange platform, was affected by quieter market conditions and central bank policies in two of its main currencies, Yen and Swiss Franc. The flat yield curve for US Treasuries reduced trading opportunities for our customers on BrokerTec, our fixed income electronic platform. Performance in all of our post trade risk and information businesses was strong.
Commenting on the year and outlook, Michael Spencer, Group Chief Executive Officer of ICAP, said: “ICAP is on track for a robust performance for the year despite the demanding economic environment. We continue to focus on our operational efficiency. In the last three months we have seen an improvement in risk appetite in some markets. We expect to see a slow move towards more normalised markets as the year progresses.”
1 Profit is defined as pre-tax profits from continuing operations excluding acquisition and disposal costs and exceptional items. On 1 February 2012 in ICAP plc’s Interim Management Statement, ICAP expected profit for the year to 31 March 2012 to be towards the upper end of the analyst range of £336 million to £358 million.