Trumped-up earnings at Nex, the fancy new name of financial broker of Icap, were not enough to stop its share price from sliding over two per cent this morning.
Group revenue was up 11 per cent in the three months to the end of December on a constant currency basis, meaning its nine month performance was up four per cent.
"After Trump's election victory we benefited from an increase in trading activity as market participants considered the impact of potential policy changes on bond and foreign exchange markets," said Michael Spencer, Nex's chief executive.
Icap sold its voice broking and information division to Tullett Prebon in deal worth £1.3bn at the end of 2016. This led to the newly merged entity changing its name to TP Icap. Competition authorities signed off the deal on the basis that the two firms would continue to operate independently of one another.
The electronic markets and post trade business of Icap was rebranded as Nex at the same time.
Although Nex was boosted by currency tailwinds – on a reported basis, revenues were up 26 per cent for the quarter – Spencer was not getting carried away.
It is still too early to assume with any confidence that the previous and prolonged period of subdued market conditions has come to a permanent end; indeed volumes in January were generally more muted.