London-based online trading firm CMC Markets Plc (LON:CMCX) has reported its results for the first six months of fiscal 2017 (CMC Markets has a March 31 year end, so the first half covers April 1 through September 30, 2016).
And, they showed a significant slowdown in business, despite including the very active trading period around June’s Brexit vote.
LeapRate readers will recall that CMC already issued a warning back in early September that it was experiencing a slow Q2, which at the time sent CMC shares down about 12%.
Overall, Revenues for the six months at CMC came in at £75.5 million, 17% below the previous six month period (Oct 2015 to March 2016). Profit before tax was 30% lower than the previous six months, at £18.8 million.
As far as the outlook on the rest of the fiscal year goes, CMC remarked that it has seen no further easing of client trading levels at the start of the second half of FY17. It does, however, believe that H2 FY17 performance will deliver an improvement on the first half of the year. But overall, given how things went in the first half, if subdued conditions persist and client trading levels do not improve, net operating income for FY17 is likely to be moderately lower than FY16.
CMC Markets CEO and controlling shareholder Peter Cruddas explained things as follows:
Our first half net operating income reduced due to lower client trading activity, as experienced by the wider market and highlighted at our AGM trading update on 7 September 2016. However, we continue to make significant strategic progress, delivering against our five pillars of growth. We are growing our active client base through retail and institutional channels, rolling out new products and platform enhancements and looking at opportunities to develop our international footprint.
It was certainly not all bad news at CMC. Although overall Revenues and revenue-per-client were down during the period, CMC did see continued growth in the number of active clients (47,623 during the period, up 8%) and client assets held rose to an all-time high of £283.3 million at period-end.
CMC’s full press release on its 2017 first half results can be seen here.