Volatility: A sleeping giant

Volatility: A sleeping giant Market volatility has been like the Incredible Hulk in 2018; a good-tempered scientist one minute, and a giant raging monster the next. We first saw the scientist turn into the monster during the spectacular February market swoon. What followed were eight months of relative calm in which the mild-mannered scientist returned, luring investors back into the market, and into US equities in particular. But as the monster re-emerged in October, the …

Five factors for nervous investors

Five factors for nervous investors You wanted shares to buy last year but didn’t get around to it, then prices rose and so you were waiting until prices fell, but now that they have fallen you are worried they will fall further. I have good news and bad news for you. The bad news is as a ‘Nervous Investor’, you will never find a perfect time to invest, when everyone agrees markets are going to …

Weekly Market Update 16 November 2018

Weekly Market Update 16 November 2018 Investment markets and key developments over the past week “Risk off” returned with a vengeance to financial markets over the last week with most share market falling and bond yields declining as last month’s worries returned, tech stocks came under renewed and the continuing plunge in the oil price weighed on energy shares. Australian shares have almost fallen back to their October low with financial shares under renewed pressure. Chinese …

13 commonsense tips to help manage your finances

13 commonsense tips to help manage your finances   Key points Getting your personal finances right can be a challenge. Here are 13 tips that may be of use: shop around when it comes to financial services; don’t take on too much debt; allow that interest rates can go up as well as down; allow for rainy days; credit cards are great but they deserve respect; use your mortgage (if you can) for all longer …

Responsible Investment Leaders – Engagement Report 2018

Responsible Investment Leaders – Engagement Report 2018 This report provides a snapshot of the work the Responsible Investment Leaders (RIL) funds have been doing on your behalf to make a difference. We cover the big issues of 2017 and showcase some of the assets the RIL funds have supported to make the world a better place – our investments in community infrastructure, sustainable forestry, clean tech and renewables are just as exciting as the engagement …

Weekly Market Update 09 November 2018

Weekly Market Update 09 November 2018 Investment markets and key developments over the past week Share markets mostly rose over the last week, helped in particular by a favourable reaction to the US midterm elections. Chinese shares remained under pressure though. Bond yields continued to rise reflecting the “risk on” tone from investors and as the Fed showed no signs of pausing its rate hikes. Commodity prices were mixed though with oil falling further and metal …

Three reasons why we’re not in a bear market

Three reasons why we’re not in a bear market October was certainly a volatile month for investors. Share markets globally fell between 6% and 7% in total return terms. Australia had the worst monthly outcome since August 2015. But if you measure the falls from highs this year to recent lows the retreat has been even bigger. The average decline for global shares has been around 10%. From its peak in late August, the S&PASX200 …

Rising US interest rates, trade wars, the US midterm election results

Rising US interest rates, trade wars, the US midterm election results – should investors be worried? Key points It’s still too early to be sure that last month’s pullback in shares is over but we remain of the view that it was not the start of a deep bear market and that the trend in shares remains up   Worries around US interest rates, trade wars, European politics etc are unlikely to be terminal.   …

Weekly Market Update 02 November 2018

Weekly Market Update 02 November 2018 Investment markets and key developments over the past week Share markets bounced back over the past week helped by good US earnings results and a lessening of trade war fears following comments from President Trump after a phone call with President Xi Jinping. Reflecting the risk on tone bond yields generally rose, but while the iron ore price rose oil and metal prices fell. The risk on tone also …

Why geopolitical concerns are somewhat overblown

Why geopolitical concerns are somewhat overblown The major worries for investors this year have been rate rises in the US, and geopolitics, particularly the US-China trade conflict and Italy. If we take another look at both those issues, however, some of the concerns appear somewhat overblown. I have previously said the US-China trade dispute would probably get worse before it gets better and that is playing out. It is clear that both sides have dug …