November 15, 2018 / 7:40 AM / 25 days ago

UPDATE 1-South Africa's Investec reports H1 operating profit up 14.2 percent

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JOHANNESBURG, Nov 15 (Reuters) - South African financial services group Investec reported a 14.2 percent rise in half-year profit on Thursday buoyed by its banking unit.

Operating profit for the six months to September 30 rose to 359.3 million pounds ($467.6 million) from 314.6 million a year earlier.

Investec’s banking unit, which focuses on high net worth individuals, reported an 18 percent in operating profit to 245.4 million pounds while its asset management arm delivered a 10 percent rise to 91.5 million pounds.

The company is hiving off and separately listing its asset management operations in London to cut costs and better compete in a industry where fees are falling and costs are rising.

The break-up is expected to be completed in the second half of 2019, Investec said in the results filing.

$1 = 0.7683 pounds Reporting by Tiisetso Motsoeneng; editing by Jason Neely

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