Expertise Investment View

29 Août 2018

With the summer coming to an end, some reflections on the state of global markets seem appropriate. It has been a year with more volatility than direction, and investors have shown less willingness than in recent years to look through the noise of politics. Two key factors that make this year different might explain this.

Expertise Investment View

16 Juillet 2018

In most news flows, economic data continue to take a back seat to events unfolding in the political sphere. As we learned in so many of the political crises of recent years – the Italian government formation, Brexit, to name a few – this does not mean that politics are actually more important for markets than trends in the real economy. 

Expertise Investment View

02 Juillet 2018

Fears of trade wars rose further in the past week. The US government gave additional hints that in addition to imposing import tariffs, it would toughen its stance on Chinese investment in the US to protect intellectual property. Scrutiny on trading partners was also increased to ensure compliance with the sanctions on oil imports from Iran.

Expertise Investment View

18 Juin 2018

Since the start of the year the ECB has faced increased nominal growth uncertainty. For a central bank that does not face the complications of an incomplete monetary union, this would be a reason to adopt a wait-and-see approach. This is all the more so because the ECB is standing with its back close to the wall.

Expertise Investment View

04 Juin 2018

Italy is back in the headlines and dominating market direction again. It is not the first time, but it has been a while since Italian politics were able to feed broader worries over sustainability of the Eurozone project. And the latter is the core reason why markets are responding more forcefully than they have done in years. Despite all Italy’s problems in terms of political instability, lack of structural reform and lingering debt burdens, it is really only when developments in Italy start to increase the probability of a Eurozone break-up that markets start to worry seriously.

Expertise Investment View

07 Mai 2018

So far 2018 has taken a completely different shape than last year, which was full of positive surprises on data, earnings, politics and US fiscal policy. Now, things have changed and investors need time to adapt to this new, less supportive and more uncertain environment and are less willing to take large directional bets.

Expertise Investment View

23 Avril 2018

It has been a volatile ride in markets. We have mainly been jumping from weeks of fears of escalation of trade conflicts and geopolitical tension to periods in which more pragmatism is expressed. Many notice that the underlying economic conditions are remarkably good. Growth is high and broad-based and unemployment rates keep trending lower.

Expertise Investment View

09 Avril 2018

Markets remain fragile. So far it is more the return of volatility than the generation of returns that describes market behaviour. Noisy politics, rising fears over trade conflicts and negative news flow over the technology sector are fighting for the headlines and are probably contributing to more market instability.

Expertise Investment View

26 Mars 2018

It was supposed to be the week of the new Fed chairman Jerome Powell. In his first post-FOMC meeting press conference this Wednesday night (19:30 CET) he will comment on the reasons to raise interest rates further towards the 1.5%-1.75% range.

Expertise Investment View

12 Mars 2018

A lot of things have been improving in recent years and as a result the global economy is now in its best state in more than a decade. And markets have noticed, and adapted. Asset prices currently reflect a much healthier outlook for global growth and corporate profitability than a few years ago. Until the February turbulence, markets also kept on indicating that things continued to improve. As a result, risky assets and especially equities continued to rise.

Expertise Investment View

26 Février 2018

The emotions of markets have created an interesting spectacle in recent weeks. The impressive moves in equity space and record jumps in volatility were yet another expression of the fact that markets will always have mysterious features that are very hard to fully understand. Such episodes of misbehaviour have always been around and help us all to stay humble.

Expertise Investment View

05 Février 2018

Inflation may well be still missing in action, but the last couple of days our other long-term missing companion, volatility returned to the markets. Over the past five trading days global equities were down 1.7%, real estate 2.7% and the ten-year German bond yields rose another 12 basis points to reach the highest level since end-2015. Also the USD witnessed some important intra-day moves last week on comments from politicians and policy makers.

Expertise Investment View

22 Janvier 2018

Optimism is on the rise. And it is not hard to see why. The global economy hasn’t been better in more than a decade with growth more balanced and synchronized than seen in a long time. And inflation remains well-behaved, while policy and political risks seem lower than in recent years.

Expertise Investment View

18 Décembre 2017

We are approaching the end of the year. With snow falling from the sky and Christmas around the corner, a bit of reflection over a glass of wine or while sitting next to the fireplace makes sense. And for all of us, these reflections will be different. Life walks in unpredictable ways and brings separate surprises and disappointments for each one of us.

Expertise Investment View

04 Décembre 2017

What will next year look like? We would all like to know and there are good reasons to expect it to be even better. Also, it probably will get a bit bumpier from a markets perspective, but that might not even be a bad thing. It needs to be managed, but also will create some opportunity.

Valentijn van Nieuwenhuijzen
Expertise Investment View

20 Novembre 2017

The global economy is stronger than it has ever been over the last decade. Whatever role politicians and policy makers have played and whether they did damage or contributed positively will be debated for years to come. Rather than discussing our stance on this topic, it is important to realize that the strength of the economy is broadly acknowledged.

Expertise Investment View

07 Novembre 2017

The complex nature of financial markets creates a need to develop ways of observing its behaviour, in order to better understand the market and its interaction with the socio-economic environment. When economics and politics diverge, it becomes even more important to understand the behavioural forces that can shape the market direction.

Expertise Investment View

23 Octobre 2017

Yet another disappointing inflation report. Many had been looking forward to last week’s report on US consumer price inflation and hoped to find confirmation that price pressures were finally rebounding. After a soft patch in global inflation trends in the first half of the year, the Summer period brought back some life to inflation dynamics. As economic growth remained healthy and, in recent weeks, also positive surprises on economic data moved upwards again, the reflation-theme revived somewhat in global markets.

Expertise Investment View

09 Octobre 2017

Yet another week full of political turmoil. The drive for independence in Catalonia, hurricane damage in Puerto Rico and raging Brexit debates in the UK all continue to create massive challenges for the governments in charge. In none of these cases it seems that political leadership has been very effective in resolving the tension (to put it mildly). Let’s hope that changes quickly, but let’s also realize that it might not be that important to markets how quickly these matters are calmed down. Markets have learned in recent years to look through the political fog.

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