The news that David Bellamy is stepping down as boss of St James’s Place after more than a quarter of a century has done nothing to help its share price this morning.

Shares in the wealth manager have slumped to the bottom of the FTSE 100 at the start of Tuesday’s trading, losing more than 6 per cent, after Mr Bellamy announced he was stepping down after 11 years as chief executive and 26 years as an executive at the group.

St James’s also reported a fall in annual profits but said it was raising its final dividend from 17.24p to 20.67 pence per share.

Mr Bellamy will be replaced as boss by Andrew Croft, the group’s current chief financial officer. Commenting on the changes, Barrie Cornes at Panmure Gordon said:

We view the internal hand over as being the best possible result for SJP and are delighted that David will continue at the company.

Importantly it’s an internal appointment which we view as key. We maintain our Buy recommendation and 1274p/share target price.

At publication time, shares at down 6.3 per cent at £10.18.

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