Stock of the Week: St James’s Place
St James’s Place is our share of the week due to the attraction of its strong dividend which is rising well above inflation. Income seeking investors should appreciate that last year the company increased its dividend by 20% and it is forecasted to grow in double digits over the next two years thanks to a strong cash generation.
In its first quarter update in April, the FTSE 100 company showed that the good momentum experienced in the year previous has continued into 2017. Overall funds under management (FuM) rose to £79.8bn with pensions seeing especially strong growth.
Interested investors should note that the company has invested in its back office infrastructure to enhance its UK and overseas distribution capabilities. Encouragingly, the firm has expanded its number of advisers as it now employs over 3,400 staff. The company has also increased its customer base as helped by the acquisition of Rowan Dartington, a Bristol-based discretionary wealth manager with assets under management in excess of £1bn.
We continue to recommend St James’s Place as a ‘buy’ as its expansion into Asia benefits from the growing middle class and should benefit from the changes to pension investing in the UK.