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Greenhill & Co Corporation CEO Discusses Q2 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

I'd now like to turn the call over to Scott Bok.

Scott Bok

Thank you Chris. The second quarter was obviously a slow one both for the entire transaction market and for us. We had very few significant transactions close in the period and also had fewer non-public assignments come to fruition than usual. As we have always had quarterly results will vary widely based on the timing of individual assignments and it's best to evaluate our results over longer periods. With respect to this quarter that is particular true.

Notwithstanding the soft quarter we feel good about how the year is developing for us both on absolute terms and relative to our competitors. Let me start with the data and then provide some more color.

Our advisory revenue for the quarter was down substantially compared to 2011 but on the year-to-date basis is down only 12%. Our total revenue is also down modestly on a year-to-date basis benefiting from positive movements in the value of our remaining principal investments in addition to our advisory revenue results.

For the second quarter our pre-tax profit margin was 7% and we had earnings per share of $0.07, while on the year-to-date basis we achieved a pre-tax profit margin of 22% the same as last year’s first half margin and achieved earnings per share of $0.60 which is down slightly from $0.64 last year.

You will recall that we have consistently talked about having four main objectives for our firm, one to increase our market share of the global pool of advisory fees, two, to consistently achieve the highest profit margin on one of our closest peers. Three, to maintain the strong dividend policy and four, to maintain a flat or even a declining share count.

I will focus on the first of those and then turn it back to Chris for the others. In terms of increasing our market share our year-to-date 12% decline in advisory revenue far outpace the markets statistics for global M&A activity as well as substantially exceeded the year-to-date results announced so far by the large banks with which we compete.

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