General Election Investment Commentary

Whether you celebrated or mourned the general election result politically, stock markets reacted very positively yesterday and sent the value of your investments higher. The FTSE 100 index rose almost 80 points or 1.1% whilst the more domestically focused FTSE 250 index gained 3.44%. At one point it was up 5.2%, posting a record high. UK housebuilders soared, for example …

Brief Market Commentary

The three main US stock markets, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite all closed at record highs on Friday. US equities are the gift that keeps on giving. Aside from the fact the US domestic economy is in very good shape and the Federal Reserve, the US central bank has been very accommodating this …

Brexit – Outlook for the economy

Yesterday I listened once again to the excellent Karen Ward, a Chief Market Strategist at JP Morgan Asset Management. Prior to this role she was Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers for the Chancellor of the Exchequer advising the Chancellor on macroeconomic issues including fiscal strategy and Brexit. Previously she worked for a decade at HSBC’s investment bank in …

Unloved UK Equities

There is a general consensus that the UK equity market is unloved. So unloved it didn’t receive a Valentine’s Day card this year. Some have even considered the UK to be uninvestable. Of course Brexit uncertainty is the main concern for investors but the US/China trade dispute and a slowing global economy are additional factors. But is it all doom …

Price and value are not the same

There is a difference between price and value. An asset may have a high price but be at fair value. In other words it is not necessarily expensive. Similarly another asset may have a low price. Its price may have even fallen in recent times but that does not necessarily mean it is cheap. Terry Smith, the highly respected manager …

Upbeat on the UK

When I read articles this morning from two independent investment commentators making positive assessments of the UK stock market I had to take note. For those of you who follow the figures the FTSE 100 has recently posted a new record closing high and is threatening to hit 8,000. So what is going here? Russ Mould, Investment Director at AJ …

Value in US & UK Stock Markets

In recent blogs I have suggested price and value are not the same thing. An index or stock price may reach a high but that does not necessarily make it expensive. Similarly a collapse in the price of an index or stock does not necessarily create good value nor is a signal to buy. Remember the concept of “value traps?” …

Investment according to the Duke of York

It probably did not escape your attention that the FTSE 100 index set a new record high of 7,129 this week before falling back to close at 7,011 on Friday. The post Brexit vote bounce since 23rd June is attributable to the sharp drop in the pound against other major currencies notably the dollar and euro, boosting the value of …

Seismic or Temporary Shifts?

One of the most interesting aspects of my job is to produce updated portfolio valuation statements for my clients’ investments. Sometimes it makes good reading, other times not. In my report I compare the figures with previous valuations, typically undertaken six months’ earlier. Aside from the change to the total figure it is very instructive to see investment trends i.e. …

Fears about Dividends from UK Blue Chips

According to an article in “Investment Week,” UK equity income fund managers have expressed concern about a squeeze on dividends from FTSE 100 companies. Larger companies came back into favour last year on the back of rotation from US equities, attractive valuations and a sell-off in smaller companies and mid-caps. However the sustainability of dividends has been questioned as first …