- Operating profits at Investec, the international specialist bank and asset manager, rose to £241m for the six months to the end of September - up 8.6% on a reported basis and 21.8% up on a currency neutral basis.

Recurring income as a percentage of total operating income amounted to 77.1% (2013: 70.9%).

Wealth & Investment's operating profit increased by 23.3% to £38.0 million (2013: £30.8 million) - an increase of 36.0% on a currency neutral basis.

Asset Management reported operating profit 6.6% ahead of the prior period at £76.7 million (2013: GBP71.9 million) - an increase of 27.2% on a currency neutral basis.

Both divisions benefited from higher levels of average funds under management and combined net inflows of £4.2bn.

The Specialist Banking business reported an increase in operating profit of 6.0% to £76.7 million - an increase of 27.2% on a currency neutral basis - largely due to strong performances from the South African banking business and the UK Corporate and Institutional business, and a lower loss reported by Australia, partially offset by less investment income earned on the Hong Kong investment portfolio.

The combined South African business reported operating profit 21.5% ahead of the prior year in rand, whilst the combined UK and Other businesses posted a 17.6% increase in operating profit in sterling.

Chief executive Stephen Koseff said: "These results demonstrate that we are delivering on our promises. The results would have been even stronger but for the continued weakness of the Rand. The investments we have made in the Asset Management and Wealth & Investment businesses are supporting solid net inflows. The performances in our South African bank and the corporate and institutional bank in the UK demonstrate the strength of our franchise."

At 8:19am: [LON:INVP] Investec PLC share price was +8.75p at 602.75p

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