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April 9, 2020

The era of monetary dominance is over. Helicopter money signals investment regime changes ahead.

The era of monetary dominance is over. Helicopter money signals investment regime changes ahead.

It was the avalanche we have long feared. From record peak to bear market, the S&P fell faster during the ‘corona crash’ than ever before, as the chart below shows.

At peak turmoil, conventional offsets (bonds, gold) proved flaky friends: investors sold what they could, not what they perhaps should. Specialist crash protections allowed Ruffer portfolios to hold their ground.

April 8, 2020

As the world gets to grips with the health and humanitarian emergency resulting from the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19), the knock-on economic effects have also been stark. In an increasingly global economy, we have seen how fragile some supply chains have become. scoutbee as a solution has a specific capability for rapid global supplier discovery, so when coronavirus began to cause pharma and medical supply shortages, we knew we should help. 

As the world gets to grips with the health and humanitarian emergency resulting from the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19), the knock-on economic effects have also been stark. In an increasingly global economy, we have seen how fragile some supply chains have become.

April 1, 2020

When the elements speak, elemental forces are unleashed, and it is important, in the middle of this storm, to capture the right tone of voice. Any false attempt to give reassurance, to boast about early success, to bury oneself in clichés, is unhelpful—even worse, it is historic: by the time these words are read, events will have unfolded which make them, as the CD music reviews have it, ‘Of historic interest only’. We are a long way from terra firma; at the time of writing, it’s a case of ‘so far, so good’. If this were a tennis match, all we could say is that we’ve had a decent first set.

March 30, 2020

In this unprecedented time of high uncertainty from a sanitary and economic perspective, the different drivers at play are moving in different directions. These forces make the exercise of GDP forecasting quite tricky and not particularly helpful for the time being.

In this unprecedented time of high uncertainty from a sanitary and economic perspective, the different drivers at play are moving in different directions. These forces make the exercise of GDP forecasting quite tricky and not particularly helpful for the time being.

As of the writing of this article on 25 March, 2020, markets are leading the real economic cycle and therefore they will bottom before the end of the pandemic. However, they will calm down and be reassured on the path forward when they can anchor expectations on three points:

March 24, 2020

Sir James Matthew, the 19th century Anglo-Irish judge, is reputed once to have said: “In England, justice is open to all, like the Ritz Hotel.” That may be the hope of Sir Frederick Barclay, who, with his daughter Amanda, recently began proceedings in the High Court in London alleging that their private discussions in the hotel had been bugged for months by children and at least one grandchild of Sir Frederick’s estranged brother, Sir David.

March 23, 2020

Seeking to escape the inflation of the 1970s, policymakers have inadvertently engineered an equally powerful deflation machine. Over the past 30 years, this has been mightily reinforced by the transformation of China’s economy and the impact of technology.

Seeking to escape the inflation of the 1970s, policymakers have inadvertently engineered an equally powerful deflation machine. Over the past 30 years, this has been mightily reinforced by the transformation of China’s economy and the impact of technology.

March 12, 2020

February saw concerns over coronavirus truly go global, as cases emerged across Europe and the US, shattering the illusion that this was an infection limited to China.

February saw concerns over coronavirus truly go global, as cases emerged across Europe and the US, shattering the illusion that this was an infection limited to China.

Whilst public safety and containment of the outbreak must clearly be the primary concern, for financial markets the key question is will the virus cause a recession?

March 5, 2020

If your family firm is considering working with outside investors, remember that the old axiom “knowledge is power” still holds true. For example, bringing in an outside investor does not have to take the “family” out of family firm. Yet, as with any change in ownership structure, you need to consider the types of investors who are going to provide a good fit for your business.

If your family firm is considering working with outside investors, remember that the old axiom “knowledge is power” still holds true. For example, bringing in an outside investor does not have to take the “family” out of family firm. Yet, as with any change in ownership structure, you need to consider the types of investors who are going to provide a good fit for your business.

February 26, 2020

The epicentre of risk in the financial system has moved. In 2008, it was leverage in the banks. Today, the equivalent risk is in the asset management industry, where a series of interlocking factors have come together to make markets increasingly ‘avalanche prone’. There is an illusion of stability. Low volatility has lulled many to sleep. We believe this will end badly—and are positioning portfolios to protect our clients from the avalanche.

This is the first of two white papers published by our chief investment officer, Henry Maxey, on the current investment climate and where we see the risks. The second paper, Dismantling the Deflation Machine, will be published in March.

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