IG Group directors demand higher pay after profits rise

SPREADBETTING firm IG Group said yesterday that it will ask shareholders to approve increases in its directors&rsquo; pay packages, as it reported a 30 per cent hike in its full-year profits, driven by new account openings.<br /><br />The company said that its directors&rsquo; basic pay has &ldquo;fallen into the bottom quartile in most relevant surveys&rdquo;, due to its policy of not reviewing remuneration every year.<br /><br />It added a number of key shareholders had agreed some increases &ndash; to be set out in the annual report &ndash; and that it intends to review basic pay annually from now on. All shareholders will be invited to vote on the proposals at the company&rsquo;s annual meeting in October.<br /><br />The news came as IG reported a pre-tax profit of &pound;125.9m for the full year to 31 May, and chief executive Tim Howkins said that the new financial year had started well, despite reduced market volatility.<br /><br />IG opened more than 74,000 accounts during the year, up from 43,000 a year earlier, helping it post revenues of &pound;257.1m, up four per cent.<br /><br />The company also confirmed a final dividend of 15p, up by 25 per cent on 2008, and its gained 2.5 per cent, to close at 276.25p.