Man Group to beat forecasts despite turmoil

Date: Thursday, March 27, 2008

LONDON (Reuters) - Man Group, the world's biggest listed hedge fund firm, said on Thursday it would beat analysts' average profit forecast for the year ended March 31, despite turmoil in financial markets.

The group (EMG.L: Quote, Profile, Research) said it had benefited from a bigger-than-expected rise in net performance fee income, as well as a strong performance at its AHL futures business.

It said analysts' average forecast for pretax profit from continuing operations was 1.82 billion pounds.

Funds under management were up at around $75 billion (37 billion pounds), from $71.7 billion at December 31, while redemptions totalled $10.6 billion, including $2.6 billion in the final quarter.

"This is a very strong set of results, achieved through a period of significant market turmoil," Chief Executive Peter Clarke said in a trading update.

"Our financial strength, strategic focus and strong performance mean that Man is extremely well placed to see continued strong growth."

Man shares have outperformed the DJ Stoxx financial services index by about 22 percent over the past 12 months. They closed at 545.5 pence on Wednesday, valuing the business at about 9.2 billion pounds.