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ABN Amro asset management profit falls 26%

NETHERLANDS – Net profit at ABN Amro’s asset management division declined by 26.3% to 14 million euros
in the first quarter.

The Dutch bank said that net profit at the arm fell from 19 million euros in the first quarter of 2002. It made a net profit of 20 million euros in the fourth quarter of 2002.

Total revenue slipped 24.3% to 109 million euros from 144 million euros in the year-before period. It said the decline in revenue was because revenues fell at a higher rate than expenses. The division manages around 13 billion dollars (11.8 billion euros) of European pension fund assets.

Assets under management at the end of March fell 0.7% to 148 billion euros from the end of the preceding quarter.

Staff levels have declined 4.5% from a year ago, down to 2,169 from 2,271 at the end of the first quarter 2002.

“The continuing weak market conditions and the compounding negative impact of the geo-political
uncertainties negatively affected the financial performance of Asset Management during the first quarter,” ABN Amro said.

At the end of the period the asset mix was 43% in equities, 43% in fixed income and 14% in cash and other. “The composition of the mandates remained stable with 56% institutional, eight percent private clients and 36% funds.”

Overall, the bank posted a net profit in the period of 690 million euros, 0.7% up on the fourth quarter of 2002 and 73.8% up on the first-quarter of 2002.

“Although we are confident about our operational performance, it is difficult to be optimistic about the general state of the global economy,” said bank chairman Aarnout Loudon. “We will therefore continue to refrain from giving an outlook for the year at this point in time.”

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