Brief Stock Market Update

It probably hasn’t escaped your attention that global stock markets have been on the slide recently. The FTSE 100 ended at 7,686 on 29/7/19. Yesterday it closed at 7,198 a fall of 6.35% in little over a week. In the US the S&P 500 fell from a historic high of 3,026 on 26/7/19 to 2,884 yesterday i.e. down 4.7%. The …

The State of the Nation – the US Economy

A number of commentaries I have read and listened to recently have been on the same theme, the US economy. Officially US growth is now in its longest expansion in history and with a dramatic shift in monetary and interest rate policy by the Federal Reserve, the US central bank, both equities and bonds have rallied in the US and …

The global economy according to JP Morgan and Donald Rumsfeld

One of the best macro-economic and stock market commentaries I listen to is the JP Morgan’s quarterly “Guide to the Markets,” presented by the excellent Karen Ward, a Chief Market Strategist at the investment firm. In a recent webinar she naturally highlighted the 180 degree turnaround in market sentiment since the end of the year. The key factors have been …

Positive Start to 2019

In my last blog post on 10/1/19 I highlighted a number of things that would be good for equity markets, the first was the Federal Reserve, the US central bank pausing on interest rate rises. On Wednesday the Fed announced borrowing costs would be unchanged. The tone of their statement was much more dovish than previously. They recognised that inflation …

Guide to the markets

Each quarter JP Morgan produce a comprehensive guide to the markets, pages full of economic charts and tables. For many people, nerds excepted, it would be as interesting as a county bus timetable or a train spotter’s manual. For an investor it is a gold mine of invaluable information. The guide is then followed by an excellent webinar for advisers, …

Crystal Balls, Yield Curves & Old Folk

Arguably the greatest challenge that faces fund managers, those who give investment advice and investors alike is to correctly assess the strength and direction of the global economy and stock markets. Get those calls right and it should be evident whether to adopt a cautious or adventurous investment strategy. Good asset allocation will then follow. Currently that question is very …

Second quarter rally – Is the pesky blonde girl back ?

In the last investment blog I reported that global stock markets retreated in the first quarter of 2018. How things change! Half way through the second quarter there has been a marked improvement in investor sentiment and stock returns. The FTSE 100 index for example closed yesterday at 7,711, a significant recovery from its March 26th low of 6,889 and …

Markets Retreat in Q1 2018

Global stock markets ended the first quarter of 2018 down. Data from HSBC Global Asset Management and Datastream showed the following index returns,* UK Equities: -7.3% Asia Pacific (excluding Japan) -7.2% Japan Equities: -5.5% European Equities: -3.3% Emerging Market Equities: -2.3% US Equities: -2.2% *MSCI are an independent producer of stock market indices widely used in the industry. These are …

The First to Present His Case

There is a proverb I like which states: “The first to present his case seems right, till another comes forward and questions him.” * The context of this proverb suggest it relates to court judgements but equally it is relevant to investment opinions as fund managers advocate polar opposite views on the investment case for differing assets and markets. For …

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?” …