Major UK-based insurer and financial services provider Prudential has revealed that 2005 was a positive year for its asset management businesses, highlighted by a 58% increase in net inflows.

<p>Classified by the company itself as a year of strong growth, Prudential&#0039;s asset management businesses produced pre-tax operating profits in 2005 of GBP195 million, ensuring that the department has virtually doubled its profits in a period of just five years.<br /><br />Total net inflows in 2005 were GBP5.2 billion, an increase of 58% on 2004. Meanwhile, total external funds under management had grown to GBP46 billion at the end of 2005. <br /><br />One of Prudential&#0039;s asset management houses, M&G, achieved record net sales of GBP3.9 billion in 2005. Net inflows in both Japan and Korea were more than GBP900 million in 2005 as the company continued to develop rapidly in Asia. <br /><br />Even more encouragingly, the momentum seen in 2005 appears to have continued into the first quarter of 2006, as M&G&#0039;s net inflows were up 38% on the first quarter in 2005 and Asian business net flows were up almost 150% on Q1 2005.<br /><br />In the first quarter of 2006 total asset management profits across the group were GBP58 million.</p>