Gilbert’s fear over Bank’s gloomy view

THE BANK of England’s downbeat view risks dragging Britain back into recession, the head of Aberdeen Asset Management has warned.

Martin Gilbert, the chief executive of Aberdeen – which posted a sharp exodus of funds in the run-up to its year-end – said Sir Mervyn King’s attitude could hit the economy in 2012.

Last week King warned of a new credit crunch and Gilbert told City A.M.: “The recovery is pretty fragile. People don’t know whether there is going to be a recession or not. We have got the Governor of the Bank of England saying everything is bad – people do listen and cut back.”

Clients pulled £900m from Aberdeen in September’s stormy markets, taking net outflows to £1.7bn over the year to 30 September. Gilbert said, however, that he thought the peak of the “worry” had now passed.

Assets under management fell 4.9 per cent to £169.9bn but Aberdeen posted a surprise a 44 per cent rise in pre-tax profits to £301.9m, beating analysts’ forecasts of £288m to £295m.