Macquarie doubles profit to $2b in bumper half

Macquarie Group net profits surged by 107 per cent over the six months to September, while a $1.5 billion capital raise will help cover additional buffers the regulator slapped on the financial services giant.

Macquarie on Friday reported net profit of $2.04 billion, a doubling from the previous half and on par with the same period last year. Assets under management jumped 31 per cent to $737 billion, aided by the takeover of US wealth manager Waddell & Reed and gains from resilient financial markets.

It announced an interim ordinary dividend of $2.72, twice what it paid out in March but below the $3.35 per share it announced this time last year.

The company will raise $1.5 billion via a non-underwritten placement to institutional shareholders. A book-build will be conducted on Friday, set at $190 per placement share, indicating a 4 per cent discount on Thursday’s closing price. The group promised a share purchase plan for retail shareholders would follow.

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