The Financial Supervisory Service announced on Thursday the asset management industry operating in Korea reported a collective net profit of 171.9 billion won ($160.8 million) in the January-March period of this year, down 1.0 percent from three months ago but more than doubled from a year ago.
The industry’s operating income reached 707.5 billion won, down by 2.5 percent from the previous quarter mainly due to a 6.4 percent decline in their fee income, the largest profit driver, to 602.2 billion won.
Income from securities investment was up 21.0 percent to 49.6 billion won.
Marketing and administrative expenses were down 2.7 percent to 381 billion won, which also reflect a base effect derived from year-end bonus payment in the fourth quarter of last year.
A total of 143 asset management houses were in the black in the quarter, while 79 were in the red. But the number of money-losing firms fell by 12, leading to a decline in the ratio of such performers from 42.3 percent in the fourth quarter to 35.6 percent in the first quarter.
Among the 23 foreign asset management firms, eight made losses.
The industry’s first-quarter return on equity was 12.2 percent, down 0.4 percentage point from the previous quarter, but up 5.4 percentage points against the same period a year earlier.
A total of 223 companies were registered as asset management business as of the end of March, eight added from the end of last year. The number of employees totaled 7,612, increasing by 274 or 3.7 percent. Asset under management totaled 981.3 trillion won, up 3.3 percent.
By Hong Jang-won and Minu Kim
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