Admiral’s FD ups stake after shares plunge

THE FINANCE director of Admiral and his wife spent nearly £150,000 on shares in the insurer after a gloomy update prompted a slide in its stock market value.

Yesterday Kevin Chidwick bought 9,736 shares at £8.36 each and Rowena Chidwick bought 8,000 at £8.29 each in deals worth £147,713 together.

Last night shares in Admiral closed down 7.61 per cent at 820p.

On Wednesday the stock fell 25.61 per cent after Admiral said this year’s profit would come in near the bottom of forecasts because of a rise in injury claims.

Diane Briere de l’Islemade, the wife of chief executive Henry Engelhardt, spent £8.74m on one million shares after trading closed on Wednesday.

Engelhardt himself has a 14.1 per cent stake which lost £116.3m on Wednesday.

The insurer, which also trades under the Bell, Diamond and Elephant brands, has finally succumbed to the industry-wide slump in profit growth. It had enjoyed an unbroken run of profit increases for seven years but said growth in its pre-tax surplus could be limited to 10 per cent this year