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Profit reported by Public Trust

By Rob Hosking

Tuesday 7th October 2003

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Public Trust has returned to the black after three years of losing money.

The government owned company reported a $90,000 profit for the year ending June 30 - Public Trust's first year trading as a body corporate.

The Public Trust Office - as it then was - made an average loss of $4 million a year for the past three years. In its heyday in the mid-1990s the office returned big profits for the government of the day - peaking at $19 million in 1993/94.

The latest result represents an $8.5 million turnaround on last year's figure, chief executive Pat Waite says.

The Public Trust's last annual report forecast a "marginally better than break even position" - $67,000 - for the coming year, and stated that "the low profit budgeted is not a soft target."

In announcing the latest result Waite noted that the company has slightly bettered that forecast and that he expects a better result next year.

The company's total funds under management for the year rose to $1 billion, up from $961 million the previous year.

Net assets employed rose from $38.801 million to $38.891 million.

The return on those assets was 0.023% - ahead of the budgeted 0.018%, Waite says. The previous year saw a result of negative 3.540%.

The company has a mortgage lending book world $155 million, and during the year it prepared more than 20,000 wills and administered more than 2,500 estates.

It receives an annual subsidy from the taxpayer of $4.3 million to cover its "public good" work.

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