Standard Life sees sales up, bolstered by automatic enrolment

Standard Life has announced a significant increase in sales of long term savings products in the first nine months of the year, with life and pension sales of £17,329m (present value of new business premiums). (Release)

The boost from automatic enrolment of UK employees to company pension schemes has seen corporate pensions up 11 per cent to £27.3bn in the nine months to 30 October. This was 23 per cent lower than consensus says Capital MSL, which was at £3.56bn, and shares have fallen on the news this morning. Net flows up 29 per cent in the third quarter.

Capital MSL comments that the result reflects a number of factors, but was "primarily driven by multi asset fund new outflows, particularly in August."

The company said today that they secured 195,000 new customers, with increasing take-up of its investment solutions by corporate businesses.

Long new business for long term savings increased by 20 per cent to £17.3bn during the nine months to 30 September - up from £14.4bn for the same period last year.

New automatic enrolment in UK retail went up by 28 per cent to £36.7bn in the first nine months of the year, with the number of advisers using Standard Life's Wrap platform increasing by 20 per cent. Net flows were up 35 per cent in the quarter.

The company's fund management operation, Standard Life Investments, reported net inflows of new client money of £8.3bn over the nine months, of which £1.1bn was attributed to the third quarter of the year.

The division, which is looking to expand its international reach, also saw sales outside the UK nearly double.

Chief executive David Nish said: "our multi-asset solutions continue to attract good net inflows. Canada is making progress in transforming its business and our Indian joint venture delivered another strong performance."