ASX Earnings Update for the Nine Months to 31 March 2013
Relative to the prior comparable period (pcp – nine months to 31 March 2012) the unaudited results were as follows:
* Statutory profit after tax $260.7 million, up 1.7%
* Underlying profit after tax $260.7 million, down 0.3%
o Operating revenue $457.1 million, up 0.6%
o Interest and dividend revenue $42.5 million, up 3.9%
o Cash operating expenses $107.5 million, up 2.6%
o Depreciation and amortisation $22.9 million, up 16.4%
The year to date earnings performance was assisted by positive year-on- year revenue and earnings growth in the third quarter. Third quarter revenues were up 9.5% and underlying earnings were up 10.7% on the same period in the previous year. All ASX businesses grew revenues in the third quarter.
Year to date revenue was up 0.6%. Positive revenue growth was recorded in ASX’s two largest businesses – Listings and Issuer Services (up 8.7%) and Derivatives (up 3.0%). Other businesses that grew revenues over the period were Technical Services (up 10.1%) and Austraclear (up 7.4%).
The growth in these businesses was offset by a fall in the year to date revenues in the businesses most closely linked to equity markets – Cash Market (down 11.9%) and Information Services (down 7.2%). The decline was driven by the first half of the financial year, with an improvement in equity market activity levels in the third quarter.
Cash operating expense growth for the nine months was 2.6%. There is no change to the guidance of 3.5% expense growth for the FY13 year.
Mr Elmer Funke Kupper, ASX Managing Director and CEO, said: “In the third quarter we saw an improvement in the Cash Market business on the back of improved equity market activity. Average daily value traded in cash equities was $4.4 billion. Combined with strong volumes in derivatives and positive revenue performance in the other ASX
businesses, group earnings grew over the quarter. This helped to lift our year to date earnings performance.
“Our focus remains on bedding down a number of regulatory changes and on advancing the business initiatives we started over the last twelve months. We are making good progress in both areas. The regulatory environment in the cash equities market is stabilising and we will deliver a number of new products and services this calendar year.
“ASX is making important investments in Australia’s financial market infrastructure. Subject to the usual regulatory approvals, in 2013 ASX plans to launch a new clearing service for over-the-counter derivatives and a new collateral management service. ASX believes it is important that investors have access to a world-class infrastructure that is
regulated under Australian law and that is globally competitive. In designing its post-trade solutions, ASX is working closely with regulators and the major local and global investment banks.”