Movin’ On Up

For UK investors all eyes were on the General Election in June, but despite the surprise result, markets took it in their stride. Of more interest to us, than the ongoing domestic political noise, has been the move of Central Banks over the month towards tightening monetary policy. In the US, the Federal Reserve raised … Continue reading “Movin’ On Up”

Merkel’s world collides with Trump

The G20 meeting this week in Hamburg should be just another review meeting by the 19 largest economies and the EU.  The Agenda is full of long term ambitions and intractable problems, from climate change to gender equality, from financial stability to managing refugees.  You can read the background papers as worthy long term statements … Continue reading “Merkel’s world collides with Trump”

Brexit: One year on

On the first anniversary of the historic vote to leave the European Union, a panel of Schroders’ experts look at the impact the referendum has had on the UK from an economic, fixed income and equity perspective.  When the result of the UK’s EU referendum confirmed that the UK had voted to leave, markets were … Continue reading “Brexit: One year on”

A-Shares: All Quiet on the Eastern Front

Two years ago this month (June) China’s A-shares (shares that trade on the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges) reached their highest level since the global financial crisis, after rocketing almost 80 per cent in six months. The market then slumped more than 43 per cent over the subsequent 11 weeks. Shares of companies that are … Continue reading “A-Shares: All Quiet on the Eastern Front”

Why the oil price is now in a bear market

The price of crude has slipped into bear market territory this week, despite Opec’s attempt to boost the price ahead of the flotation of Saudi Aramco. What caused it – and will it reverse anytime soon? Crude oil prices are once again in a tailspin, on concerns that the global glut of oil is not … Continue reading “Why the oil price is now in a bear market”

Green is the new black

There is a new breed of bond in the fixed income world. It’s different, it’s bold – it’s the so-called ‘green bond’ market. As the drive towards environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing continues to gather pace, policy makers and investors alike are waking up to the importance – and benefits – of green bond … Continue reading “Green is the new black”

What is normal for the Fed?

As expected, the US Central Bank has raised interest rates to 1.25% and talked about normalising its policy. The statement included detailed guidance on what the Federal Reserve intends to do next. During the financial crash and its aftermath the Fed bought up large quantities of Treasury bonds and mortgage backed securities, forcing interest rates … Continue reading “What is normal for the Fed?”

Does low volatility mean a shock lies in store for investors?

Despite the many economic and geopolitical risks in the world today, volatility in asset markets has been remarkably subdued. The Vix index, the market’s so-called fear gauge, has recently fallen to a reading of around 10. This is exceptionally low compared to long-term norms. and only just above the all-time low of 9 that it … Continue reading “Does low volatility mean a shock lies in store for investors?”

Has unconventional monetary policy had its day?

“People will always try to stop you doing the right thing if it’s unconventional,” so said Warren Buffett in an interview for Time magazine in 2008.  Buffett wasn’t referring to monetary policy specifically, but there’s some truth in his adage if we apply it to the more controversial tools that central banks have used since … Continue reading “Has unconventional monetary policy had its day?”

UK election: what a hung parliament means for markets

Following the surprise UK general election result, Schroders’ Alix Stewart,  David Docherty & Azad Zangana, consider the implications for the economy and markets.   The UK general election has resulted in a hung parliament, with no party commanding an overall majority. The Conservatives have emerged as the largest party and will likely seek to form … Continue reading “UK election: what a hung parliament means for markets”

Could the election hit your portfolio?

Theresa May is likely to increase her majority in today’s general election, although some outlier polls have suggested a hung parliament is a possibility. Here’s what could happen to markets. Charles Stanley is neutral regarding the outcome of the today’s campaign, but the polling and the commentary about the vote suggests a Conservative win with … Continue reading “Could the election hit your portfolio?”

A pleasant surprise from President Trump

It’s fashionable to write off President Trump. His healthcare reform has been slowed by strong opposition, his tax reform has been delayed, and now he is being investigated over his links with Russia and the removal of the FBI Head from office. The market has wobbled over these difficulties. Meanwhile President Trump has turned his … Continue reading “A pleasant surprise from President Trump”

Why we are still optimistic

When we sat down this week to review world markets and world economies the surprising thing was how few surprises there have been so far this year. We expected the euro to survive its brushes with mortality in the Dutch and French elections. It has done so. We like many have forecast reasonable growth of … Continue reading “Why we are still optimistic”

Which stockmarket sectors have performed best over two decades?

We look at which UK stockmarket sectors could have grown your money the most over the last 20 years, and what their valuations are telling us now. When the stockmarket rises and falls the sectors within it can move very differently, especially in the short-term. Perhaps the best example was the dotcom boom and bust, … Continue reading “Which stockmarket sectors have performed best over two decades?”