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Just Group to shut U.S. operations as first-quarter sales drop

Christian Fernsby |
Just Group announced a business update for the 3 months ended 31 March 2019.

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Retirement Income sales for Q119 were 59% lower than for Q118, as a result of a lower level of completed Defined Benefit De-risking (“DB”) sales and our disciplined Guaranteed Income for Life (“GIfL”) pricing stance.

DB sales were down 90% year on year to £26m in Q119, due to a temporary reduction in activity levels in our target segment.

In Q2 so far we have completed a series of transactions with a value in excess of £300m and the run rate is returning to that of the second half of 2018.

The pipeline remains full and market pricing is attractive.

GIfL sales for Q119 were down 23% year on year to £145m.

The lower level of volumes reflects pricing increases implemented following the Prudential Regulation Authority's publication of CP13/18.

The volumes are in line with our planned run rate and more similar to the Q418 level.

Lifetime Mortgage (“LTM”) advances of £79m were down 47%, as we focus on capital efficient LTMs and manage volumes in line with Retirement Income sales.

"We have a plan in place to ensure we achieve this target, which includes a number of actions we will be taking over the course of this year. These include a renewed focus on cost control, the closure of loss making operations such as the US, reductions in new business LTM backing ratios and a shift towards more capital efficient assets," David Richardson, Interim Group Chief Executive, said.

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