Toronto-based CI Financial Corp. reported its third-quarter earnings on Thursday, showing increased profit and a record level of assets in wealth management as the firm continued to expand into the U.S.
Earnings per share for the quarter were $0.62, compared to $0.56 in the previous quarter and $0.60 in the third quarter of 2019.
CI had nearly $144 million in free cash flow in Q3, an increase of 12% from about $128 million in Q2 and a decline of 1% from the same quarter a year ago.
In a release, Kurt MacAlpine, CI CEO, described the results as “strong” and attributed them to “cost discipline.”
Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses were cut by nearly $16 million, or 13%, year over year in the quarter. Excluding the impact of acquisitions, SG&A was reduced by about $19 million, or 16%, compared to the third quarter of 2019, the firm said.
At Sept. 30, 2020, total assets under management were $128.3 billion, an increase of 2% from June 30, 2020, and a decline of 1% from Sept. 30, 2019.
Core assets under management, which consist of assets managed by CI’s Canadian and Australian subsidiaries, were $123.6 billion at Sept. 30, 2020, an increase of 2% from three months earlier and a decline of 5% year over year.
During the third quarter, U.S. assets under management grew by 10% to $4.7 billion.
Total wealth management assets at quarter-end were $66.1 billion — a quarter-end record for CI — and an increase of $12.3 billion or 23% over June 30, 2020, and an increase of $18 billion or 37% year over year.
The increase came with the firm’s acquisition of Illinois-based Balasa Dinverno Foltz LLC and an interest in Boston-based Congress Wealth Management, LLC.
U.S. wealth management assets were $14.9 billion at quarter-end, up $10 billion over the previous quarter.
Canadian wealth management assets, at $51.2 billion, increased 4% during the quarter and 6% from a year ago. This included assets of Assante Wealth Management (Canada) Ltd., CI Private Counsel LP, CI Direct Investing (WealthBar Financial Services Inc.) and Virtual Brokers.
CI reported $2 billion in overall net redemptions for the quarter.
CI’s Canadian retail business, excluding products closed to new investors, had $1.4 billion in net redemptions, relatively unchanged versus the third quarter of 2019. CI’s Canadian institutional business had net redemptions of $1.1 billion, an increase of $0.7 billion from the same quarter a year ago.
New U.S. acquisitions were announced in the quarter, as well as a majority interest in Burlington, Ont.–based Aligned Capital Partners Inc.
Since the third quarter, CI’s expansion into the U.S. wealth management business has included the acquisitions of New York–based Roosevelt Investment Group, Inc., which the firm announced on Wednesday; Florida-based Doyle Wealth Management Inc.; and Houston-based Stavis & Cohen Financial LLC (majority interest).
CI also said on Thursday that its common shares have been approved for listing on the New York Stock Exchange, and it expects trading will begin on Nov. 17, 2020.