Looking back at the markets through April

A selection of articles looking back through the markets last month. Global Market Review Painful consequences Following March’s collapse in share prices, global stock markets made a partial recovery in April, although most major indices still sustained double-digit losses compared with the start of the year. As the coronavirus pandemic continued to cut a swathe … Continue reading “Looking back at the markets through April”

Looking back at the markets through February

A selection of articles looking back through the markets last month. Global Market Review Investors take fright as coronavirus takes hold As the spread of coronavirus gathered pace across the world during February, investors became increasingly concerned that the economic impact could trigger a global recession.  “Central banks are coming under pressure to respond to … Continue reading “Looking back at the markets through February”

Looking back at the markets through January

A selection of articles looking back through the markets last month. Global Market Review Coronavirus hits investor sentiment Investor sentiment was initially buoyed in January as the US and China signed their interim trade deal, driving US share indices to new all-time highs. However, major global equity markets ultimately ended the month in negative territory … Continue reading “Looking back at the markets through January”

The US-EU economic battle

Donald Trump spoke out at Davos, condemning the people he called the “perennial prophets of doom” for forecasting climate and other disasters. He said they “are the heirs of yesterday’s foolish fortune tellers. They want us to do badly”. He did not name the EU or individual European countries, but the implication was clear. His … Continue reading “The US-EU economic battle”

Looking back at the markets through December

A selection of articles looking back through the markets last month. Global Market Review Double-digit gains in 2019 Despite a year that was filled with political and social upheaval – from the trade war between the US and China, through Brexit, to the civil unrest in Hong Kong – many world markets achieved double-digit gains … Continue reading “Looking back at the markets through December”

Looking back at Global markets in November

Global Market Review Brexit takes a back seat Although politics continued to dominate newsflow and sentiment in the UK during November, Brexit was superseded by the General Election as the focal point. As the different parties set out their manifestos, Brexit took a back seat as the focus of the different party leaders shifted to … Continue reading “Looking back at Global markets in November”

Looking back at the markets through October

A selection of articles looking back through the markets last month. Global Market Review Election fever October saw the UK plunge into election fever as progress on Brexit once again ground to a halt. Although Prime Minister Boris Johnson managed to reach a new Brexit Withdrawal Agreement with the EU , he failed to win … Continue reading “Looking back at the markets through October”

Unwise to chase the rally in European equities

Although the eurozone economy is struggling, European assets have performed strongly in recent weeks as policymakers at the European Central Bank (ECB) have made it clear that they are ready to implement another round of monetary stimulus. Nevertheless, we remain pessimistic about the eurozone economy’s prospects and sceptical of the ECB’s ability to stimulate growth. … Continue reading “Unwise to chase the rally in European equities”

Doom Loop

The most likely candidate for the next ‘Lehman moment’ is in Europe. In some ways the regulatory response that followed in the years after the collapse of Lehman Brothers has been a success. The days of racy balance sheets chasing outsized profits on wafer thin capital are largely over; replaced by a mantra of prudence … Continue reading “Doom Loop”

A spot of turbulence

Global markets hit a rough patch in early February. Equity markets sold off, commodities softened, credit spreads widened and capital flowed out of emerging markets as volatility bounced back sharply. There have been a range of explanations offered for this dislocation, from jitters over rising inflation to concerns that rising term premia could snuff out … Continue reading “A spot of turbulence”

What does a normal interest rate look like?

Markets have been worried that interest rates in the west are heading back to normal in a hurry. If rates go too high too soon they could damage the recovery and do more harm to shares. As the West agonises over the pace of putting up interest rates and winding down special monetary measures, the … Continue reading “What does a normal interest rate look like?”

After the melt up

In January we saw shares rising rapidly, in what some called a melt up. In the last few days they have come back down again very quickly. The year’s gains were rapidly erased. Should we worry? Last week before the fall I wrote that “There will be bad times from time to time. Worrying about … Continue reading “After the melt up”

Can European politics damage the euro?

It is often fashionable to worry about European politics as newer parties of the right, left and centre emerge to challenge the economic orthodoxy of the Eurozone. We saw this at its most spectacular in Greece, where Syriza swept aside the old parties and gained a majority in a proportional system designed to make that … Continue reading “Can European politics damage the euro?”

Financial Crisis Ten Years On

Ten years ago, queues quietly began forming outside branches of Northern Rock. Unsettled by press reports that the bank was asking for help from the Bank of England, anxious customers wanted out. The first run on a UK bank for over a century was underway, and Northern Rock would be nationalised within a year. In … Continue reading “Financial Crisis Ten Years On”

Currency wars

It’s been a strange world for currencies as well as for bonds and interest rates since the western crash. Countries and central banks that used to worry about their currencies falling too much have all seemed to welcome weakness in their counters, hoping that will stimulate exports and allow a bit more inflation. Four of … Continue reading “Currency wars”