Redundancy costs and the effects of the crunch hit Brewin Dolphin profits

STOCKBROKER Brewin Dolphin announced lower annual profits due to redundancy costs and tough trading in investment banking and warned of more woe.<br /><br />Brewin reported pre-tax profit of &pound;21.9m for the year to 27 September, down from &pound;32m a year ago, after cutting an undisclosed number of jobs.<br /><br />The group said its investment banking division started the year with an uncertain outlook and reported half year losses of &pound;800,000, although it ended the year in the black.<br /><br />Executive chairman Jamie Matheson said Brewin had traded relatively steadily in &ldquo;perhaps the most difficult times in living memory.&rdquo;<br /><br />&ldquo;Current trading continues to be satisfactory, although we should not assume the economic woes of this country and the rest of the world are completely behind us,&rdquo; he said.<br /><br />Brewin is among the largest independent private client investment managers in the UK, with 40 offices and &pound;20.5bn under management.<br /><br />Matheson said flotations of companies should start to increase in the next five years.<br /><br />&ldquo;I think the restriction on the availability of debt finance over the next few years is going to play a big part in initial public offerings (IPOs) from the private equity sector,&rdquo; he said.<br /><br />Brewin proposed a final dividend of 3.55p, making a total dividend of 7.1p.