Reporting a fee income rise of 4% to £754.4m for E&Y in the UK last year, Land said that the market would continue to be relatively flat for the rest of this financial year and that he was ‘cautious about next year as well’.
But he said he was satisfied with the results in what had been an extremely difficult year.
All the firm’s service lines showed modest revenue increases with the corporate finance division showing the biggest rise of 11%.
Land said he felt E&Y had ‘beat the market’ though it is difficult to determine as Deloitte & Touche – which reported UK growth of 15.7% for the year to May 2002 – and E&Y are the only Big Four firms to have published UK results this year.
PricewaterhouseCoopers, which reported 1% global growth earlier this month, does not publish UK figures while KPMG’s UK results are not due until next month.
Land said he saw change as the way to improve growth and confidence in financial markets, with the adoption of independent regulation a key aspect of this.
‘The audit profession deserves a reasonable amount of credit for its independence, but I think we can take it further,’ he said, adding that this would be a simplification of the present structure with one ‘umbrella’ organisation taking charge.
When asked who should pay for the regulation he said: ‘A reasonable chunk would come via levies on corporates from the listed sector.’
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