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”

Markets are due a pause for breath

Shares continue to rocket, with equity market gains in 2020 impressive. But can this performance continue?  After the party comes the hangover. The risk-on rally in equities that started at the end of September looks overdue for a pause – and any correction following the recent melt-up would be pretty healthy. For investors becoming concerned … Continue reading “Markets are due a pause for breath”

How good is the US-China trade deal?

When the world’s two largest economies and powers sit down to talk, the world waits to learn what they have agreed. The document signed by the US and China this week is an unusual international agreement, as it has no reference to independent arbitration and little external reference to world bodies, mentioning the IMF on … Continue reading “How good is the US-China trade deal?”

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”

The biggest victim of US tariffs in 2020 could be the EU

The tariff battle between Washington and Beijing is far from over, but the biggest battle for US trade hawks over the next 12 months is likely to be with Europe. The global trade slowdown has already hit the European economy hard. Brussels has been forced to cut its growth forecasts for the eurozone to its … Continue reading “The biggest victim of US tariffs in 2020 could be the EU”

The impact of US foreign policy on markets

Trade restrictions and tariffs are the main response of the Trump administration to foreign disagreements, but there are some positives too. Donald Trump moves markets. He watches them regularly and tries to influence them by what he says and what he does. He sees a rising US share market as proof that he is making … Continue reading “The impact of US foreign policy on markets”

Looking back at the markets through August

A selection of articles looking back through the markets last month. Global Market Review Parliament’s suspension creates controversy The prospect of a no-deal Brexit crept closer during August as Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that Parliament would be suspended shortly after MPs return from their summer break until the Queen’s Speech on 14 October. The … Continue reading “Looking back at the markets through August”

The G7 solves nothing

The meeting of leaders over the weekend in Biarritz led to US President Donald Trump’s tweet suggesting there could be more trade talks with China after all. It was sufficient for a modest rally, after the tariff-induced sell off last week. The markets remain fixated by the twin stories of possible rate cuts to come, … Continue reading “The G7 solves nothing”

Looking back at the markets through July

A selection of articles looking back through the markets last month.   Global market review Possibility of “no deal” moves closer Boris Johnson beat Jeremy Hunt during July to become the new leader of the Conservative Party and the UK’s new Prime Minister. The new Government’s harder-line approach to Brexit – and the increased prospect … Continue reading “Looking back at the markets through July”

There’ll be no swift resolution to this trade war

As Donald Trump threatens to put tariffs on all imports from China and Beijing tells its state-owned organisations to stop importing US agricultural products, the trade war looks set to drag on. At the end of last week’s trade talks between the US and China, there were no signs of a breakthrough. Beijing made a … Continue reading “There’ll be no swift resolution to this trade war”

Markets learn to live with some protectionism

On Monday 15th July, President Trump lent the White House lawn to US manufacturers to celebrate the ability of the US to make things for itself. He explained that it is a win-win situation if the US buys products made just down the road, with more and better-paid jobs resulting from the purchases. He signed … Continue reading “Markets learn to live with some protectionism”

What lies in store for equities?

The first half of 2019 was characterised by the strongest and most broad-based asset price reflation that we have seen since 2009. It is clear that this pace of gains cannot continue through the second half of the year. Bad news has been good news for stock markets for quite some time.  That’s because investors … Continue reading “What lies in store for equities?”

Looking back at the markets through June

A selection of articles looking back through the markets last month. Brexit: no further forward   Global market review The third anniversary of the Brexit referendum came and went in June, and still the issue of Brexit remained up in the air. As the clock ticked towards the extended deadline of 31 October, the Conservative … Continue reading “Looking back at the markets through June”

The US will be reluctant to go to war with Iran

The media are full of stories of growing tension between Iran and the US. The attack on two tankers in the Gulf understandably moved oil prices up whilst unsettling investors about possible future escalation of hostilities. The US main allies in the region would like to get the USA more involved in their proxy wars … Continue reading “The US will be reluctant to go to war with Iran”

Mr Trump’s torrent of trade tweets

Financial markets are being buffeted by President Trump’s tweets on trade. What are the short and long-term implications of this new style of policy making in the US? Tactical tweeting Since the summer of last year, investors have had to look at Twitter far more often. President Trump has used this form of social media … Continue reading “Mr Trump’s torrent of trade tweets”