Good numbers alone aren’t enough

Tidjane Thiam has not had an easy run since being seen to have led investors up the garden path during Prudential’s disastrous failed bid for AIA.

But the harried chief executive is expected to find some relief in the insurance giant’s full-year results this Wednesday.

Operating profit is forecast to come in at £1.7bn versus £1.4bn last year, while consensus predictions for operating profit from European embedded value run at £3.37bn, an improvement on last year’s £3.2bn.

But will the figures be enough to placate investors still smarting from having to fork out some £450m on a £22.6bn bid that went nowhere?

In order to stay in his post for the long-run, Thiam will also have to show that he can deliver shareholder returns and income, rather than just profit. The firm hiked its dividend payment after the collapse of the bid, but investors remain wary.