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Independent auditors' report

Independent auditors' report to the members of Provident Financial plc

We have audited the financial statements of Provident Financial plc for the year ended 31 December 2009 which comprise the consolidated income statement, the group and company statements of comprehensive income, the group and company balance sheets, the group and company statements of changes in shareholders' equity, the group and company statements of cash flows, the statement of accounting policies, financial and capital risk management and the related notes. The financial reporting framework that has been applied in their preparation is applicable law and International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs) as adopted by the European Union and, as regards the company financial statements, as applied in accordance with the provisions of the Companies Act 2006.

Respective responsibilities of directors and auditors

As explained more fully in the directors' responsibilities statement, the directors are responsible for the preparation of the financial statements and for being satisfied that they give a true and fair view. Our responsibility is to audit the financial statements in accordance with applicable law and International Standards on Auditing (UK and Ireland). Those standards require us to comply with the Auditing Practices Board's Ethical Standards for Auditors.

This report, including the opinions, has been prepared for and only for the company's members as a body in accordance with Chapter 3 of Part 16 of the Companies Act 2006 and for no other purpose. We do not, in giving these opinions, accept or assume responsibility for any other purpose or to any other person to whom this report is shown or into whose hands it may come save where expressly agreed by our prior consent in writing.

Scope of the audit of the financial statements

An audit involves obtaining evidence about the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements sufficient to give reasonable assurance that the financial statements are free from material misstatement, whether caused by fraud or error. This includes an assessment of: whether the accounting policies are appropriate to the group's and the company's circumstances and have been consistently applied and adequately disclosed; the reasonableness of significant accounting estimates made by the directors; and the overall presentation of the financial statements.

Opinion on financial statements

In our opinion:

  • the financial statements give a true and fair view of the state of the group's and of the company's affairs as at 31 December 2009 and of the group's profit and group's and company's cash flows for the year then ended;
  • the group financial statements have been properly prepared in accordance with IFRSs as adopted by the European Union;
  • the company financial statements have been properly prepared in accordance with IFRSs as adopted by the European Union and as applied in accordance with the provisions of the Companies Act 2006; and
  • the financial statements have been prepared in accordance with the requirements of the Companies Act 2006 and, as regards the group financial statements, Article 4 of the lAS Regulation.

Opinion on other matters prescribed by the Companies Act 2006

In our opinion:

  • the part of the directors' remuneration report to be audited has been properly prepared in accordance with the Companies Act 2006;
  • the information given in the directors' report for the financial year for which the financial statements are prepared is consistent with the financial statements; and
  • the information given in the corporate governance statement with respect to internal control and risk management systems and about share capital structures is consistent with the financial statements.

Matters on which we are required to report by exception

We have nothing to report in respect of the following:

Under the Companies Act 2006 we are required to report to you if, in our opinion:

  • adequate accounting records have not been kept by the company, or returns adequate for our audit have not been received from branches not visited by us; or
  • the company financial statements and the part of the directors' remuneration report to be audited are not in agreement with the accounting records and returns; or
  • certain disclosures of directors' remuneration specified by law are not made; or
  • we have not received all the information and explanations we require for our audit.

Under the Listing Rules we are required to review:

  • the directors' statement, in relation to going concern; and
  • the parts of the corporate governance statement relating to the company's compliance with the nine provisions of the June 2008 Combined Code specified for our review.

Mark Hannam (Senior Statutory Auditor)
for and on behalf of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP
Chartered Accountants and Statutory Auditors
Leeds
2 March 2010