On 14 September 2019, Saudi Arabia suffered a drone attack targeting the Abqaiq crude oil processing facility and the nearby Khurais oil field. Described as ‘the heart of Saudi production’, Abqaiq processes c.7 million barrels per day (bpd), roughly 70% of current Saudi output, while Khurais produces around 1.5 million… Read the article
Gold has been trending upwards since the fourth quarter sell-off and is now at its highest level since 2013. In this month’s video, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora looks at the driving forces behind investors’ renewed interest in the yellow metal.
August saw the return of risk aversion, as President Trump… Read the article
After half a century of post-war global trade integration, where we witnessed an increase in the total trade of goods and services from 39% of global GDP in 1990 to 61% in 2008, rising populism and protectionist policies have led… Read the article
On 18 June 2019, Facebook launched project Libra alongside 27 partners including e-commerce marketplace eBay, media services provider Spotify, transport network companies Uber and Lyft, and payment companies such as Mastercard, PayPal and Visa. According to the recent white paper from Libra Association members, Libra is designed to be a… Read the article
The Fed delivered its much anticipated interest rate cut at the end of July. In this month’s video, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora looks at the implications for the US dollar. Could the US Treasury resort to direct FX intervention, if Fed cuts alone do not suppress dollar… Read the article
Geopolitical risks appear to be a recurring theme impacting global markets and can have a significant influence on the short and medium term direction of asset prices. ‘Political risk’ and ‘geopolitical risk’ are terms often used interchangeably, but for analytical purposes, it can be useful to distinguish between the two.… Read the article
While bonds appear to be signalling an economic slowdown, equities are suggesting growth will continue. In this month’s video Investment Director, Ritu Vohora looks at the conundrum facing investors, with mixed messages emanating from bond and stock markets.
The first half of 2019 has ended with the strongest and broadest… Read the article
The last week of June saw the conclusion of an eight month boardroom battle at LIXIL, one of Japan’s largest building material and equipment businesses. The outcome – the return of ousted former chief executive Kinya Seto, who had been successfully restructuring the business – is a welcome… Read the article
The changing face of investing: a brief history
The investment industry has gone through a myriad of changes since the turn of the 20th century, fuelled by innovation, technology, regulatory changes and evolving investor preferences. Over the past five decades, we’ve witnessed a sizeable uptick in the pace of this… Read the article
In this month’s video, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora looks at the escalating trade war between the US and China, with tensions reducing risk appetite and intensifying fears of a global economic slowdown.
‘Sell in May and go away’, proved an apt saying, as global equities came under fresh pressure with… Read the article
21 year old Kylie Jenner is the world’s youngest self-made billionaire. The company she started over three years ago, selling $29 lipstick kits, recorded $420m sales in its first 18 months. For context, Tom Ford Beauty was said to have taken a decade to achieve a comparable figure.
Similarly, Rihanna’s… Read the article
Deteriorating sentiment hits US health insurers
Shares in US managed care companies have taken a beating recently with concerns over potential US healthcare reforms weighing on sentiment. While the S&P 500 Index has recovered from its 2018 lows, and is up around 15% year-to-date, the US managed healthcare sector is… Read the article
In this month’s video, Investment Specialist, Kirsty Clark looks at the prospects for the euro area in 2019 as the region embarks on its most accommodative fiscal policy of the last decade.
Equity markets continued to trend higher in April, supported by economic data surprises and a slowdown in the… Read the article
As the Heisei era comes to an end, the era of Reiwa will soon start in an unusual fashion. Japan will be steeped in a mood of jubilation for its new emperor, rather than mourning for the passing of the old. Perhaps this is another sign that Japan is entering… Read the article
- Following two years of debate against Tech giants, Mark Zuckerberg wrote an article asking for regulation
- Digital platforms had distanced themselves from content editing to ensure immunity granted by a law from 1990s. That law is out of date today and we need new rules. However, setting them is not straight… Read the article
In this month’s video, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora looks at the recent ‘buyback wave’ fuelled by corporate tax cuts. Do share buybacks only benefit company executives or do they also create long-term value for shareholders?
Equity markets extended their year-to-date rally in March, making Q1 2019 the second strongest quarter… Read the article
This March marks the 10-year anniversary of the longest bull market in history that has been ploughing on in the US since early March 2009. The S&P 500 Index has delivered a staggering 400% in total returns over the decade. In addition, the US economic cycle is the second longest… Read the article
While responsible investment is hardly a new concept, there is a fair degree of confusion around some of the more recently introduced terminology – namely what is meant by ‘ESG’ (environmental, social and governance) and how this fits into the spectrum of traditional ‘ethical’ investing, ‘sustainable’ investing and ‘impact’ investing.… Read the article
In this month’s video Investment Director Ritu Vohora, offers some key takeaways following the latest round of quarterly earnings announcements. Results were better than feared, with actual reported earnings surprising positively, particularly in the US. The economic backdrop remains supportive but earnings growth looks set to moderate in 2019, so selectivity… Read the article
In this month’s video, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora, looks at the Fed’s dramatic shift to a more dovish stance, with an emphasis on patience. The Fed’s pause was welcomed by investors in January and is positive for risk assets. But risks remain and we are likely to see continued volatility… Read the article
In this month’s video, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora looks at the evolution of the FTSE 100 over the past 35 years and whether UK equities are a buying opportunity
As 2019 begins, it inherits a long list of risks and uncertainty from a tumultuous 2018, that ended on a painful… Watch the video
The perceived opposing investment styles of value, income and growth is a perplexing concept. To me, it conjures up imagery of investors huddled into the extreme corners of an equilateral triangle.
A lone voice pipes up: … “I’m a ‘quality’ investor. In which corner do I… Read the article
In this month’s video, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora reflects on the return of volatility in 2018 and what it means for equities as we look ahead to the new year.
Despite a modest equity rebound in November, as we draw to the close of 2018, it’s on track to be… Read the article
In this month’s video, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora looks at October’s frightful market sell-off and the return of bearish sentiment. Is this a healthy shake-out or the start of a more prolonged downturn?
Spooky October lived up to its frightful reputation, proving to be a turbulent month for equities, with the… Read the article
As Americans head to the polls today, all eyes will be on the US midterms. Consensus has Democrats taking the House and Republicans keeping the Senate, but elections in recent years have been notable for springing surprises, both in the US and elsewhere. Next week’s results may provide their own… Read the article
It seems you can’t open a newspaper without reading another negative headline about China. Most ‘western’ financial journalists love to write about trade wars, currency manipulation, shadow banking and mounting debt, the narrative being that China has a myriad of problems, the scale and potential ramifications of which are huge.… Read the article
In this month’s video, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora looks at the sharp divergence in equity markets. Are we at an inflection point?
Global equity markets sit at an important juncture. They have diverged sharply this year, with the US roaring to new highs, while most non-US equity markets have faltered… Watch the video
It’s no surprise that in an ever evolving and complex world where people are constantly overloaded with new information, our natural human tendency is to search for simplicity. We’ve seen this evolve in the investment world as much as anywhere else with many investors now having a single focus when… Read the article
Responsible investment by the bay
Taking place in a different location each year, the PRI in Person conference brings together signatories of the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and other investment professionals to discuss all of the pressing issues that responsible investors are facing.
I attended this year’s… Read the article
“Karma is like a rubber-band: it can only stretch so far before it comes back and smacks you in the face.” – Unknown
As US equities continue their record breaking bull run, market participants have understandably started to question how much longer this will continue for and whether we’re entering… Read the article
Gold posted its fifth straight monthly drop and has fallen almost 8% YTD despite escalating trade tensions and geopolitical risks. In this month’s update, Ritu Vohora, Investment Director looks at why the precious metal seems to have lost its lustre and safe haven status.… Watch the video
Come September, the biggest change to the sector structure in the Global Industry Classification Standard (GICS) history will take place, with more than 8% of the S&P 500 index market cap being re-classified into the new Communication Services sector. Under the changes, the existing Telecommunication Services sector will be combined… Read the article
I’m often asked what I think poses the greatest threat to the current US bull market. Rising rates? Inflation? Regulation of the FAANGs? Whilst these all pose potential risks to the earnings power of the market, the issue that currently concerns me most is tariffs – and the prospect that… Read the article
Earnings disappointments from the likes of Facebook has sparked concerns whether the stupendous growth of tech stocks can continue. After a decade wins, are the FAANGs losing their bite? In this month’s update, Ritu Vohora, Investment Director looks at whether this could be a return for… Watch the video
With World Cup fever captivating the globe and the tournament providing lots of surprises, Investment Director, Ritu Vohora, looks at the importance of having a strong offence and defence strategy when thinking about sector… Watch the video
Last month (June 2018), the Japanese Financial Services Agency rolled out the first revision to its Corporate Governance Code. The improvement in corporate governance in Japan has played a big part in the Abenomics Japanese equities recovery story. This much-anticipated revision will provide further impetus for Japan Inc to behave… Read the article
In this month’s update Ritu Vohora, Investment Director, explores the impact of rising US yields and a resurgent dollar on emerging markets. Is this a déjà vu of 2013’s ‘Taper… Watch the video
In this month’s update Ritu Vohora, Investment Director, reflects on the Q1 earnings season. It’s been exceptional so far, at least compared to expectations. Are we at ‘peak… Watch the video
Are today’s technology titans exploiting their market position without any attention to broader stakeholder welfare? Essentially, this is the implicit question being discussed in most media today.
Given the recent news flow, it certainly feels like technology has had a rough start to the year. In the past few weeks,… Read the article
This Saturday (April 14th) sees the 175th running of the Grand National, the most famous jump race in the world. With thrills and spills throughout its 4-mile, 4-furlong length, the Grand National is something of a national institution. Nearly 10 million people up and down the country are expected to… Read the article
In this month’s update Ritu Vohora, Investment Director, looks at the threat of trade protectionism on global… Watch the video
Stories in the media about fake news, Russian trolls, secretive organisations like Cambridge Analytica improperly using personal data to influence political elections – it all sounds like something out of an episode of House of Cards.
Despite Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg’s claims that Facebook will do better in the… Read the article
Since the start of 2016, the US stock market has rallied the best part of 35%, with the bulk of that coming since the election of Donald Trump. The corollary of this is that one of the most common questions we field from clients relates to American valuations and whether… Read the article
Today (March 22nd) is World Water Day which aims to focus attention on the importance of water not only in our daily lives, but also for the sustainable development of the global economy. With the world’s population continuing to rise hand in hand with urbanisation, global water demand… Read the article
In this month’s update Ritu Vohora, Investment Director, examines the implications of February’s spike in market volatility. The bull market is likely still intact, but we are entering choppier… Watch the video
China was one of the best performing emerging markets last year as the stockmarket soared. This result probably surprised many investors who are more familiar with gloomy warnings about the country’s slowing economy, overheating property market and rising debt levels.
The rally arguably reflected growing confidence about the… Read the article
The abrupt reversal of equity markets in the last few weeks has sent shivers down investors’ spines, particularly as momentum was the dominant factor behind the rally that preceded it. Time to panic? On the contrary, history shows that buying into short-term weakness has been a fruitful strategy for long-term… Read the article
In this month’s update Ritu Vohora, Investment Director, looks at the implications for US tax reform on equities. How much is priced in already and will the new fiscal stimulus provide a boost to US… Watch the video
In this month’s update Ritu Vohora, Investment Director, looks at what effect macroeconomic events this year could have on… Watch the video
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Welcome to the M&G Multi Asset Team’s Allocation blog, previously known as the Episode blog. We have changed the name of our blog to resonate better with our readers in Europe, however, the content and purpose of the blog has not changed. The Allocation blog continues to aim to provide unique market perspectives from our dedicated team of experienced asset allocators.OK