Hargreaves Lansdown enjoys record ISA season as share dealing boom continues


Hargreaves Lansdown PLC (LON:HL.) attracted record levels of new business in the first four months of 2021, with record ISA subscriptions and record share dealing volumes.

The UK’s largest investment and pension platform saw net inflows of GBP4.6bn in the period, which was even higher than the GBP4.3bn that analysts on average expected.

This increased its total assets under administration (AUA) to GBP132.9bn as at 30 April 2021, up 28% for the 10 months of the group’s financial year so far.

Elevated volatility and recent market highs has led to much increased share dealing by many of HL’s 1.62mln clients, particularly from higher commissions from higher levels of international share trading in the likes of Tesla and GameStop, leading to a 19% year-on-year increase in group revenue to GBP532.7mln for the year to date.

In the marketing campaign ahead of the 5 April tax year end, there was a 48% increase in new money put into the ISA and SIPP accounts compared to the same period last year, and a 54% increase in new ISA and SIPP account openings.

“We have also continued to see significantly elevated levels of client engagement throughout the period, with a 150% increase in the number of people logging into their accounts, particularly via the mobile app,” said chief executive Chris Hill.

He said the FTSE 100 company was continuing to invest in growing the business, “both as part of broadening our proposition and ensuring we continue to respond to our clients’ needs”, including a new cash ISA, expanded digital service capabilities and senior management hires.

“Conditions look more positive than they did at the end of December,” Hill said. “However, there remains much uncertainty and like many businesses, we cannot predict levels of new business or client activity.”

The shares, having risen by over a quarter since November, fell 6% to 1,671.48p on Thursday morning, along with 99% of the Footise constituents.

Broker Peel Hunt reiterated its ‘buy’ rating said it expects to increase its full-year profit forecasts to GBP375mln with earnings per share of 63.4p.

“The stock is trading on a December 2021E EV/EBIT of 23x, which is a discount to platform peers. The share price performance has been mixed, up about 8% over last three months, which masks recovery since lows in February/March.”


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