China’s Black Monday – one year on

This week marks the anniversary of last year’s stock market crash that some have dubbed China’s Black Monday. Shanghai shares fell 8.5% on August 24, triggering losses on exchanges around the world and causing mayhem in currency and commodity markets. Apart from the financial losses, the market meltdown damaged the reputation of China’s policymakers. The … Continue reading “China’s Black Monday – one year on”

Are negative rates helping?

These three charts suggest not. Desperate times have prompted desperate measures. But is the extreme medicine working? Savers and investors may wish to look away now. Savers and investors need economies to grow: it’s good for company profits that flow back to investors and it helps keep interest rates stable for savers. This all makes … Continue reading “Are negative rates helping?”

Monetary policy: a bridge over troubled waters?

“The European Central Bank’s actions can only build a bridge to the future. The project must be completed through decisive actions by governments – both individually and collectively – to address the underlying causes of our current challenges.” – European Central Bank President, Mario Draghi, September 2012. Eurozone:  And friends just can’t be found Mr … Continue reading “Monetary policy: a bridge over troubled waters?”

Has QE caused a crisis of capitalism?

Capitalism has delivered prosperity, and countries that adopt the principles of free markets and enterprise are more prosperous. Witness the countries of the former Eastern Bloc. However it would be disingenuous to say everyone at all times benefit from capitalism. It does suffer from crises and the Great Financial Crash (GFC) in 2008 may be … Continue reading “Has QE caused a crisis of capitalism?”

Bank of England cuts interest rates to 0.25%: what next?

The Bank of England has cut rates for the first time in seven years. We offer the latest market forecasts and assess the impact on savings and mortgages. The Bank of England (BoE) announced a quarter point cut in the UK bank rate to 0.25% at midday today (Thursday), marking the first change in more … Continue reading “Bank of England cuts interest rates to 0.25%: what next?”

Emerging markets review – July 2016

Global equity markets generally rose during July, and the overall performance of emerging markets outstripped that of developed countries as investors sought growth opportunities. Investor sentiment in China received a boost from encouraging retail sales data: retail sales rose at an annualised rate of 10.6% in July, compared with 10% in July. Industrial production proved … Continue reading “Emerging markets review – July 2016”

Europe market review – July 2016

Having dropped during June following the UK’s shock Brexit vote, European equity markets rose during July, boosted by speculation over further stimulus measures. Nevertheless, confidence remained brittle, undermined by terrorist atrocities in France and Germany , and by continuing uncertainties surrounding Brexit. European Central Bank (ECB) policymakers believe that Brexit could have a “significant” effect … Continue reading “Europe market review – July 2016”

US market review – July 2016

US equity indices rebounded in July after a June that was marred by the fallout from the UK’s Brexit vote. Investors drew encouragement from some relatively strong corporate earnings releases, and both the Dow Jones Industrial Average Index and the S&P 500 Index both hit new all-time highs during the month. During July, the Dow … Continue reading “US market review – July 2016”

Global bond market review – July 2016

Although the initial shock of the UK’s Brexit vote had time to wear off as July progressed, global bond yields remained under pressure. Against a backdrop of declining yields and low interest rates, demand for bond funds continued to rise as investors searched for returns amongst the relative safety of high-quality government bonds and investment-grade … Continue reading “Global bond market review – July 2016”

UK equity market review – July 2016

The fallout from the UK’s Brexit decision continued to overshadow newsflow and sentiment during July. In particular, the first half of the month was dominated by political upheaval that resulted in the appointment of Theresa May as Prime Minister and Philip Hammond as Chancellor of the Exchequer. Over July as a whole, the FTSE 100 … Continue reading “UK equity market review – July 2016”