‘Resilient’ AMP posted net outflows of $1.5bn in the March quarter as it suffered the loss of another corporate mandate.
‘Resilient’ AMP posted net outflows of $1.5bn in the March quarter as it suffered the loss of another corporate mandate.

Embattled AMP hit by more outflows

Under pressure AMP was hit by more outflows in the March quarter, with its wealth management arm suffering the loss of another corporate mandate.

Over the three months to March, assets under management increased by $1.6bn to $125.7bn on the back of rising investment markets.

But the exit of a corporate super mandate pushed AMP's net outflows to $1.5bn, down only slightly on the $1.7bn in outflows it suffered over the same period last year.

AMP Capital assets under management fell $3.3bn to $186.5bn, with the bulk due to net outflows of $2.9bn.

Outgoing CEO Francesco De Ferrari attempted to paint a positive picture on the outlook for the wealth manager, saying cashflows were showing underlying signs of improvement.

"Business performance remained resilient during the first quarter as we continued to make progress on delivery of our transformation strategy to become a simpler, client-led business," he said in the quarterly update.

"The increase to our assets under management in our wealth management business reflects continued improvement in investment markets in the first quarter."

Of the $1.5bn in net outflows, a third was in pension payments, with the remainder due to the loss of corporate super mandates.

"We are accelerating change within AMP, having made strong progress on addressing our legacy issues, including our client remediation program, which is close to 90 per cent complete," Mr De Ferrari said.

"We remain focused on delivering critical priorities to progress our transformation over the next quarter and continue positioning the business for future growth."

But no mention was made of the protracted takeover talks with Ares Management, which will likely frustrate shareholders anxious for some movement in the stop-start discussions.

As revealed by The Australian this month, the US suitor is understood to be forging ahead with a cash offer for all of AMP's $59bn private markets unit, despite the under-pressure wealth group's preference for a joint venture.

The Ares deal team is believed to be interested in the division in its entirety and may lob an offer ahead of AMP's annual general meeting on April 30.

Ares abandoned a $6bn-plus whole-of-company bid for AMP in February before proposing to acquire 60 per cent of the division in a joint venture that would see it take management control while AMP holds on to the remaining 40 per cent.

Over the quarter, external net outflows at AMP Capital were driven by fixed income outflows as well as planned divestment of assets in infrastructure equity closed-end funds, the wealth manager said.

These outflows were partially offset by continued inflows in infrastructure debt capability as investments were made.

In its bank division, the loan book grew by $200m to $20.8bn, driven by competitive owner-occupied pricing, AMP said. Total deposits fell by $100m to $16bn.

Originally published as Embattled AMP hit by more outflows