Our Views on the Markets and the Economy

Geo-Politics Knocks the Markets

When we take a long-term view we are always conscious of the need to be aware of cyclical developments. Short-run economic cycles are superimposed upon long-run structural trends, sometimes coming powerfully together at times to drive markets.

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On Thursday, the Bank of England decided by a vote of 6-2 to leave interest rates unchanged at 0.25 per cent. They also opted to leave unchanged their other existing policy measures of £435 billion of government bond purchases and £10 billion of corporate bond buying. Changes to either of those, like any rate hike, would have marked a significant shift in the direction of policy and have had a market impact.

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The New Normal for the UK Economy

Two key phrases help describe the current economic challenge facing politicians and policy makers in the UK and across the western world. These are "hyper normalisation" and "policy normalisation". How they are resolved will have a big impact on economies and markets in the year ahead.

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The Latest Economic Update from the IMF

Overnight the International Monetary Fund (IMF) provided an update of their global economic outlook. Although the IMF is not a great forecaster, we take it seriously because it is an indicator of where benchmark thinking is on global growth.

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It may be a hot topic for investors, but what does the term “robo advice” actually mean? Here is some much-needed clarity from Netwealth COO and co-founder Thomas Salter.

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Economic and Political Update (2)

The unnecessary and unexpected general election has led to a political risk premium now being factored into the outlook for the UK economy and financial assets. Investors and savers frequently ask what are our views on the political outlook.

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Economic and Political Update (1)

The unnecessary and unexpected general election has led to a political risk premium now being factored into the outlook for the UK economy and financial assets. Investors and savers frequently ask what are our views on the political outlook.

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How geopolitics trumps economics

Earlier this week I attended the "Athens Seminar", an economic and political round table discussion that has been hosted annually since 1979 and that I have attended, on and off, over the last decade. This invitation only event brings together experts, policy makers and politicians from across the globe. I thought it would be of interest to share some of the main takeaways, as they help understand the current environment.

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The Financial Conduct Authority has just finished their investigation into the Asset Management Industry and their findings are staggering (though not a surprise). Remarkably, more than 20 million people in Britain are investors in either pensions or stock & shares ISAs but there has been very little coverage from the press on this matter.

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We need a new approach to wealth management. With the FCA turning its attention to the sector, pressure is mounting on the traditional culture of high fees and indifferent service.

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