Please allow me to express my sincere gratitude for the continued support and patronage of shareholders and investors.
We would like to express our heartfelt condolences to all those affected by the earthquake in the Kumamoto and Oita prefectures, their families and concerned parties. We, officers and employees of the Company, hope for the health of the people in the affected areas and the earliest recovery and restoration.
During the fiscal year 2015, although the Nikkei Stock Average soared at the beginning, it then saw wild fluctuations from the middle to the end of the period. The volatile price movements gradually dampened the investment stance of individual investors and the daily individual stock trading value at the two major stock exchanges decreased by 3% year on year.
Amid such business environment, the Company hit record-high shares in individual stock trading value for the full year, interim period (second half), and quarter period (the fourth quarter). We also marked the highest-ever operating revenue, net operating revenue, and income before income taxes, owing to best ever financial income, trading income, and investment trust revenue. Regarding shareholder return, focusing on the “total return ratio” that combines dividends and share buy-backs, the Company set a target of 100% for the average total return ratio for the three-year period from FY2015 through FY2017. With regard to dividends, we started interim dividend from FY2015, in addition to year-end dividend we previously paid. We also set a “50% payout ratio and 4% DOE” as the minimum objective, and paid 12.0 yen in fiscal year 2015 per share (interim dividend of 6.0 yen and year-end dividend of 6.0 yen), an increase of 0.5 yen compared to the previous period (payout ratio of 51.4% and DOE of 9.1%). In conjunction with the share buy-backs we conducted totaling 3.8 billion yen, the total return ratio for the fiscal year 2015 came to 99.5%. We hereby report that we implemented a 2-for-1 stock split with the record date of June 30, 2015, with the purpose of improving the liquidity of the Company’s shares and expanding its investor base.
On March 25, 2016, the Company decided to conclude a software development contracting agreement with Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities. With an aim to maximize growth and synergies to further MUFG Group’s financial instruments business, our largest shareholder changed from the Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ to Mitsubishi UFJ Securities Holdings as of April 1, 2015. With the conclusion of this agreement, the Company promotes “capitalizing on the Group’s customer base,” “mutual sharing of products and services within MUFG Group,” and “developing new business by leveraging the Company’s systems,” which are the securities strategies of the MUFG Group, to further enhance its corporate value. Also, by continuously offering systems to financial institutions both inside and outside the Group, we aim to establish a financial base highly resilient to the market environment.
Recently, FinTech (utilization of IT in financial service) is getting momentum. Based on our advanced IT technological capabilities and know-how cultivated over many years, the Company strives to contribute to the development of financial services by actively utilizing the latest technologies such as blockchain, big data, artificial intelligence (AI), and IoT. Through leveraging its position as the only major online securities company that is part of a megabank group and the development and operational capabilities of proprietary systems, we will devote effort to achieve further development. At the same time, we will thoroughly adhere to our basic policy of returning profits to our shareholders and investors. We, officers and employees of the Company, look forward to your continued patronage and support in the future.
Masakatsu Saito, President and CEO