The result was an 11 per cent increase on the half year ended 30 September 2018.
Macquarie Group managing director and CEO Shemara Wikramanayake said the company’s first-half result highlights the benefits of the business and geographic diversity of the group, with increased client activity across many of its business lines and favourable market conditions across the commodities and global markets in particular.”
Annuity-style activities, which are undertaken by Macquarie Asset Management, Banking and Financial Services and certain businesses of Commodities and Global Markets (CGM), generated a combined net profit contribution of $1.7 billion, up 15 per cent on 1H19 and up 11 per cent on 2H19.
Markets-facing activities, which are undertaken by Macquarie Capital and most businesses of CGM, delivered a combined net profit contribution of $1.2 billion, up 4 per cent on 1H19 but down 42 per cent on 2H19.
Macquarie’s assets under management (AUM) at 30 September 2019 were $563.4 billion, up 2 per cent from $551.3 billion at 31 March 2019, largely due to foreign exchange impacts, investments made by funds managed by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA) and market movements, partially offset by asset realisations made by MIRA-managed funds and net flows in Macquarie Investment Management.
Macquarie also announced a 1H20 interim ordinary dividend of $2.50 per share (40 per cent franked), up 16 per cent on the 1H19 interim ordinary dividend of $2.15 per share (45 per cent franked) and down 31 per cent on the 2H19 final ordinary dividend of $3.60 per share (45 per cent franked). This represents a payout ratio of 61 per cent. The record date for the final ordinary dividend is 12 November 2019 and the payment date is 18 December 2019.
Mr Wikramanayake noted that while the impact of future market conditions makes forecasting difficult, the group currently expects the financial year 2020 result to be slightly down on FY19.
“Macquarie remains well positioned to deliver superior performance in the medium term due to: our deep expertise in major markets; strength in business and geographic diversity and ability to adapt the portfolio mix to changing market conditions; the ongoing program to identify cost-saving initiatives and efficiency; a strong and conservative balance sheet; and a proven risk management framework and culture,” Ms Wikramanayake said.
At 30 September 2019 the group employed 15,704 staff, which was in line with 31 March 2019. In addition, more than 120,000 people were employed at assets managed by Macquarie.