Invesco slate clean, say the new brooms

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The Independent Online
THE NEW brooms at Invesco, the fund management group, said yesterday the firm had the best compliance department in the City and that it had no issues left to discuss with any regulatory body, writes Peter Rodgers.

Charles Brady, the American who replaced Lord Stevens as chairman last year, said: 'We want to keep it exactly that way.'

He was reporting half-year profits untainted by past difficulties such as regulatory fines and the firm's role in the Maxwell affair. They were pounds 4.2m down at pounds 18.7m before tax and after exceptional items. The interim dividend is up a quarter to 1.25p.

Last year Invesco paid a record pounds 750,000 fine to Imro, the investment management regulator, and announced an pounds 11.5m settlement with Mirror Group Pension Trustees, without admitting it should have blown the whistle on Robert Maxwell. Invesco's seven-person compliance department is about to be strengthened with a new boss recruited from another City firm.

Mr Brady said net sales of retail financial products in Britain rose for the first time in some years, 'reflecting the market's confidence that Maxwell is behind us'.

Invesco's total funds under management worldwide declined slightly to pounds 42bn over the past year. Mr Brady blamed difficult market conditions and exchange rate movements.

The shares fell 11.5p to 172.5p.