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Flow Traders assets reach highest level on record

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Flow Traders has announced its 2Q17 results reporting that global ETP assets under management reached the highest level on record at the end of 2Q17 with continuous inflows.

The firm writes that products in which Flow Traders is a registered market maker rose to 5,274 (+27 per cent YTD, +6 per cent Q-o-Q). Flow Traders 2Q17 ETP Value Traded rose to EUR184.7 billion (+6 per cent Q-o-Q), outperforming the market in EMEA and the Americas.

“This led to an increase of our ETP Value Traded by 21 per cent Y-o-Y in 1H17 where the market ETP Value Traded declined 12 per cent Y-o-Y,” the firm says.

Flow Traders 2Q17 Net Trading Income (NTI) reached EUR46.7 million, reflecting the ongoing slow market conditions and product mix traded, the firm says, while Flow Traders 2Q17 EBITDA margin came in at 36 per cent with costs developing as expected in 2Q17 as Flow Traders continued to invest in its people, products and technology.

The Total Capital position remained solid after final FY16 dividend payment in 2Q17. Interim dividend for FY17 is set at EUR0.30, stock will trade ex-dividend on 4 August. So far in 2017, Flow Traders reports no loss days and has 38 consecutive months without a loss day. FTEs grew 8 per cent YTD to 369.

Co-CEO Dennis Dijkstra says: “2017 so far has proven to be a year with two faces; subdued trading activities and a continuous underlying growth trend in the ETP industry. The global ETP market again reached new highs, as the total ETP AuM continued to grow in 1H17, crossing the USD4 trillion level, and the number of ETP listings continued to grow to over 10,250.

“However, following the continued decline in volatility and velocity in 1H17, we touched the lowest levels of market activity in almost 30 years, impacting the ETP Value Traded in the market and of Flow Traders. Amid such market circumstances, Flow Traders achieved an NTI in 1H17 of EUR95.0 million while it grew its volumes traded by 21 per cent in 1H17 year-on-year.

“We generated EUR0.56 EPS and have not had a loss day for over 38 months now. Our FTE grew 4 per cent in the second quarter and to continue to stimulate our team driven approach and entrepreneurship and increase alignment with our shareholders we will introduce a new employee equity participation plan in 2017. As a part of this plan we will buy shares in the market up to one million euro.
 
“With the markets’ continued focus on developments like MiFID II and further improvements of the trading infrastructure globally, Flow Traders continues to grow its global presence in a cost conscious way to be able to capture further upside when markets return to their historic average activity level”.

Co-CEO Sjoerd Rietberg added: “In 2Q17 Flow Traders’ ETP Value Traded continued to outperform the market, reaching EUR185 billion, mainly driven by EMEA and the Americas. Our 2Q17 NTI of EUR46.7 million is a reflection of the product mix traded under the current subdued market circumstances.

“Regionally, Europe stood out this quarter, as we gained market share and improved margins there. In the US and Asia, market sentiment remained lacklustre, impacting the product mix traded and market spreads, and as such, our Revenue Capture as well.

“In Asia, the market developments were influenced by a fluctuation in the volumes traded in the Chinese markets. Filtering out that impact, our performance was more in line with the market in Asia. In the US, we have started to trade with more US counterparties as our institutional trading setup has been tested, improved and is now being rolled out, as was announced at the end of 2016. Markets were rather slow in 2Q17, impacting Revenue Capture substantially. Flow Traders US managed to grow its presence despite these market circumstances, and its market share continued to grow to above 2% on-exchange.

“All in all, 1H17 results are a reflection of the market circumstances we are in. In these markets, we continued to grow our team and infrastructure, drove initiatives such as the rollout of OTC in the US and the new Hong Kong office in Asia, and we continued to grow our liquidity providerships and the number of products we trade. We keep working to improve our performance every day and we are convinced that the long term growth path we are on will deliver a strongly improved performance when markets become more active again.”

CFO Marcel Jongmans says: “As we highlighted during the Analyst Day, fixed costs have developed as expected so far in 2017, which is why we reiterate our guidance that the fixed costs will grow in the range of 15-20 per cent in 2017. Net Profit came in at EUR12.5 million in 2Q17, leading to a Net Profit for 1H17 of EUR26.1 million which translates to an EPS of EUR0.56. We continued to invest in our long term growth strategy during the period and still delivered an EBITDA margin of 37 per cent year-to-date. This allows us to pay an interim dividend of EUR0.30 over FY17. We are confident that Flow Traders will keep growing in line with the long term growth trend, while maintaining cost conscious in order to support our ambition of becoming the leading global ETP liquidity provider”.

Flow Traders comments that in line with market expectations, the ETP market continued to grow in global Assets under Management, a trend that is expected to continue in 2017 and beyond.

“The shift in assets from active management funds towards the passive industry is ongoing and strongly drives ETP growth across all asset classes. Regulation, such as MiFID II is expected to bring more transparency, which will benefit the ETP market as such as well. We will continue to grow organically by increasing our coverage within the ETP space, whilst pursuing our goal to grow our NTI structurally and to outperform the growth in the Market ETP Value Traded. As part of our organic growth strategy, we will open a new office in Hong Kong in 2017 and re-locate our office in New York,” the announcement concludes.

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