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In just a few short years, blockchain technology has surged past cybersecurity, mobile payments and cloud computing to become arguably the most innovative new technology in the financial-services industry – and one that is particularly promising for ESG-focused investors.
Despite a volatile start to the year and a brief Brexit-related setback, risk assets like high-yield bonds, convertibles and equities have continued their upward climb. Doug Forsyth details the multiple factors fuelling their strong performance.
The British pound’s decline is hitting the UK consumer in the form of rising inflation and noticeably slower growth, even as business confidence and other “soft” data points remain positive. It may be the harsher realities that show through in the Bank of England’s forecasts.
Beset with low rates, slow growth and a new US president who wants a significant shift in policy, the Federal Reserve faces one of the most uncertain periods in its 104-year history. What could a changing Fed mean for investors?
President Trump's ambitious plans are expected to encounter stiff resistance, but meaningful spending and taxation changes should happen well before year-end. The markets will respond well if Mr Trump's pro-growth, pro-business policies become reality.
As geopolitics and disruption factor into just about every investment decision in this post-election period, it’s important to bear in mind the “creative power of destruction”. This is precisely the environment where active investors can apply their skills and sort out the winners.
In today’s low-yield environment, dividend strategies can be a key performance driver for investors’ portfolios – and they can play a role as an anchor of stability amid increased market volatility. Moreover, with “reflation” gearing up and corporate profits looking strong, dividends may become even more relevant.
Donald Trump’s military-spending plans should help not just US defence contractors, but European firms with a large US presence. And while his infrastructure ideas need Congressional support, they could lift material suppliers and contracting companies in 2018.
With a growing likelihood that Trump’s fiscal policies will be inflationary, the odds of a Fed rate hike are surging, as higher inflation means a faster tightening cycle. So will President Trump find it easier to bring back inflation than factory jobs?
Some of the top factors limiting US growth also hold the key to its future: Fed policy has lost its effectiveness, populism has transformed politics and technology has radically reshaped economic activity. Policymakers and businesses alike must take notice or risk missing the wave.
Although much is unknown about the new US president’s economic policy, our chief economist says the central theme is a shift from monetary easing (via Fed stimulus) to fiscal easing (via tax cuts and spending), which could have a major impact on Europe.