US - BlackRock and Merrill Lynch have released Q4 and full year financial results, in which Merrill Lynch posted a full year net loss of US$7.8bn.
Full year net loss stood at $7.8bn, down from profits of $7.5bn last year, while incomes declined by 67% from $33.8bn to $11.3bn.
John Thain, chairman and chief executive officer of Merrill Lynch, said: "While the firm's earnings performance for the year is clearly unacceptable, over the last few weeks we have substantially strengthened the firm's liquidity and balance sheet."
Meanwhile, BlackRock posted positive returns across all areas of the business. Full year net income rose to $995m, up from $322m at the end of 2006. BlackRock's assets under management rose by $232bn over the year to $1.357trn.
The sharp rise reflects the acquisition and integration of Merrill Lynch Investment Managers (MLIM), bought in September 2006, and fund of funds business Quellos Group.
Laurence Fink, chairman and chief executive officer, BlackRock, said: "The markets were exceptionally volatile during the fourth quarter as investors digested the implications of the U.S. housing slump, the ongoing sub-prime debacle, a sustained liquidity contraction and a weaker dollar."
PP has compiled a list of what to watch out for over the coming months.
Canada Life has signed a £351m bulk annuity contract insuring the pensioner liabilities of 2,510 members and dependents in the AA UK Pension Scheme.
In this week's Pensions Buzz, we want to know if you believe there is ever a case for combining retirement savings products with other savings products, and if the PPF levy for sponsorless schemes is appropriate for DB consolidators.