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I am pleased to report the excellent results of our Merchant Bank, complemented by the continuing strong contribution from our General Insurance Business which boosted our half-year profits to $74.6 million (2006: $48.3 million). Revenue growth was $63 million whereas expenses only grew by $27 million when compared with the same period in 2006.
Earning Per Share of 89¢ (2006: 57¢) is a 56% improvement over last year.
We are very concerned about a lack of market response to the proposed measures to revive interest in local equities but are encouraged by the open market operations of the Central Bank to hold interest rates in an inflationary market.
Our business lines continue to emulate excellent risk management principles and accordingly our financial results are progressive.
An interim dividend of 15¢ (2006: 10¢) has been declared by your Board of Directors and is payable October 5, 2007. This reflects the level of confidence in the outlook for the second half of the year.
Anthony N. Sabga, CMT,Hon LLD (UWI)
July 31, 2007