Prudential’s (LON:PRU) share price has slipped into the red in London in today’s session as the company suffered a legal setback, with the High Court blocking a transfer of annuities. The news comes after the Pru updated investors on its performance this week, reporting a rise in profits for the first half of the year.
As of 14:57 BST, Prudential’s share price had given up 0.80 percent to 1,418.50p. The shares are underperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index having climbed into positive territory and currently standing 0.35 percent higher at 1,418.50 points.
The Pru suffers legal setback
Prudential announced in a statement today that the High Court of England and Wales had declined to sanction the transfer of a portfolio of annuities from one of its subsidiaries to Rothesay Life. The decision follows a deal in March last year.
“We are disappointed by the High Court’s decision. The Independent Expert, who was appointed to report to the High Court, concluded the transfer would have no material adverse effect on the security of benefits or the reasonable benefit expectations of our policyholders,” the Pru said in the statement, adding that the companies had been granted leave to appeal the judgment by the High Court.
Prudential further moved to reassure investors that the High Court’s decision would not have an impact on the timetable for the demerger of M&GPrudential from Prudential which is expected to complete in the final quarter of the year.
Analyst ratings update
Deutsche Bank reaffirmed the blue-chip asset management group as a ‘buy’ today, without specifying a target on the Prudential share price, while Royal Bank of Canada reiterated its ‘sector performer’ rating on the shares yesterday. According to MarketBeat, the Pru currently has a consensus ‘buy’ rating and an average valuation of 2,053.91p.