Legal & General share price inches up as profits and earnings climb

Caitlin Morrison
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L&G boss Nigel Wilson said the company is playing its part to regenerate the UK's cities

Legal & General has reported a hike in profit and earnings during 2016,

The figures

Profit before tax was up 17 per cent to £1.6bn, from £1.4bn in 2015.

Earnings per share rose 19 per cent to 22.2p from 18.58p.

The group's full year dividend came in at 14.35p per share, an increase of seven per cent on the previous 12 months.

Shares in L&G inched up by 0.75 per cent at the open but was down by one per cent at pixel time.

Why it's interesting

The company's results are broadly in line with expectations, and L&G's retirement arm grew new business to £8.5bn from £2.9bn - surpassing its target of doubling new business sales for the full year.

The FTSE 100 insurance group also revealed that its Solvency II surplus had increased by £400m since the half year, from £5.3bn to £5.7bn - analysts at Canaccord Genuity said this was a "solid" number.

What Legal & General said

"Our long term approach to strategy and investment coupled with outstanding execution has again delivered terrific financial performance in 2016," said chief executive Nigel Wilson.

"We believe the UK remains a great place for us to help fill the huge funding gaps and under-provision of key financial products.

"We are playing our part to regenerate the UK's cities, delivering economic growth and jobs, capitalise on its world-leading universities and improve commercialisation of its scientific discoveries. Additionally, we are accelerating the evolution of our US businesses."

Wilson added: "We look forward to the future with confidence as our core markets are growing, our market share is increasing, our balance sheet is strong and we have positive cash and earnings momentum."

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