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MARKET REPORT: Motor insurance claims send Admiral into reverse

Slump: Admiral said he suffered one of

Insurer Admiral took a hit by cutting its dividend after car claims hurt its profits.

Lamenting one of the “toughest years” in decades, the blue-chip company reported a 39% drop in profit for 2022 to £469million.

This was well below the £485m quoted by analysts and the Admiral cut its dividend payout by 40% to 112p per share. The stock fell 4.1%, or 85p, to 2003p.

Slump: Admiral said he suffered one of

Slump: Admiral said it had endured one of the ‘toughest years’ in decades and reported profits of £469m for 2022 – well below analysts’ reported £485m

The Admiral has been hit by soaring auto parts costs, which have driven up the value of claims.

Bad weather also took its toll amid a flurry of claims for everything from burst water pipes during the cold snap to damage from Storm Eunice. But it attracted more customers, while revenue rose 5% to £3.7bn.

Peel Hunt said the decision to raise car insurance premiums by 20 per cent, in response to rising claims costs, “is a good sign that the UK car market is returning to some form of discipline”.

But the setbacks echoed those of Direct Line, which in January scrapped its dividend after claims spiked following December’s deep freeze. However, all was not catastrophic.

Hiscox, the Lloyd’s of London insurer that covers everything from natural disasters to cyberattacks, posted a profit of £38m for 2022.

Although this figure is well below the £162m in 2021, analysts were expecting a loss of £75m. Hiscox rose 5.2%, or 55.5p, to 1128.5p.

The FTSE 100 climbed 0.1%, or 10.44 points, to 7929.92 while the FTSE 250 fell 0.5%, or 104.64 points, to 19,851.97.

Safety fence maker Hill & Smith has hailed the strength of its US business after its turnover rose 17% to £732.1million in 2022, while profits jumped 62% to reach £69.3million.

Stock Tracking – Amigo Holdings

Amigo Holdings has warned that its bid to raise £45million from investors remains “extremely difficult”.

The lender has until May 26 to find the funds, otherwise it must cease operations.

But Amigo said it was “legally bound” to close once it thinks the capital raise will fail. So far he has received ‘non-binding indicative interest’ from investors of around £25million.

The shares, which floated at 275p in June 2018, fell 26.4%, or 0.66p, to 1.84p.

But the shares fell 6.7%, or 94p, to 1320p. There was better news for Capita after its series of corporate divestitures showed few signs of slowing.

As part of efforts to focus on key divisions and reduce debt, the outsourcing giant has agreed to sell its Security Watchdog business to Matrix for £14m.

On Monday, he reached a £21million deal to sell three of his human resources businesses. The shares fell 2.1%, or 0.9p, to 41.4p.

Tullow Oil fell 8.1%, or 2.76p, to 31.5p after warning its cash flow would plummet this year due to increased production off the coast of Ghana.

Wealth manager Quilter rose 3.4%, or 2.98p, to 92.06p after revenue fell 2% to £606m in 2022 but was ahead of £590m sterling than analysts had predicted. A 3% drop in profit to £134m was still £21m above market expectations.

Amte Power, which makes lithium-ion and sodium-ion battery cells for the energy storage and automotive sector, posted a loss of £3.72 million for the six months to December 3, compared to 2 £.65m a year ago.

The group is investing heavily in the development of battery cells that can be used in hybrid electric vehicles, off-grid locations and the oil and gas sector. The shares fell 2.9%, or 2p, to 66p.

IP Group, which invests in science and technology companies such as Oxford Nanopore, suffered a loss after the value of its public companies plunged by £428.5million in 2022.

The company recorded a loss of £344.5million last year, compared to a profit of £449.3million the year before.

It fell 4.8%, or 2.95p, to 58.65p.

MusicMagpie appears to have taken a low note after warning that “the short-term outlook continues to be difficult”.

The company, which helps consumers buy and sell used CDs and electronics, said an expected post-pandemic slump in its book and record categories last year was offset by growth. of its consumer technology business. It fell 14.9%, or 5.6p, to 31.9p.

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