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17/01/19
Asset Allocation
Asset Allocation – Montagnes russes

US equities have hugely outperformed their international peers over the long haul and other US financial assets in the short…

15/01/19
China
China – winter woes and unknown unknowns

Chinese data suggests the trade war is biting. This is focusing minds in Beijing, meaning some kind of deal between…

11/01/19
Global
End of the ICE age

There have been various points of blame for weak auto sales. The most under-appreciated input has been technological innovation, as…

Asset Allocation: Asset Allocation – Montagnes russes

US equities have hugely outperformed their international peers over the long haul and other US financial assets in the short run. We see little fundamental justification for this. As the economic and profit cycles peak and financial conditions tighten, this anomaly is likely to correct itself. We remain underweight.

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China: China – winter woes and unknown unknowns

Chinese data suggests the trade war is biting. This is focusing minds in Beijing, meaning some kind of deal between Trump and Xi is likely. The key question is whether the damage already inflicted on Chinese domestic confidence can be reversed? Uncertainty is likely to last until Chinese New Year effects wash through the data. But we think that, while the economy is trickier to control than in the past, the Party still has enough levers to maintain growth. That means no renminbi devaluation and domestic headwinds should weigh less on the local equity market.

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Global: End of the ICE age

There have been various points of blame for weak auto sales. The most under-appreciated input has been technological innovation, as electric vehicles (EVs) have become economically viable. EVs offer superior technology, even before factoring in the environmental and fiscal benefits.
The auto industry’s problem is both supply and demand. They ignored the step-change and thus are well behind in the EV development curve. Meanwhile, consumers are starting to shun the combustion engine — after all who would spend tens of thousands on a soon to be obsolete product. This supply-demand gap threatens to wreck the industry, with economies like Germany, that invested heavily in these now-outdated technologies, particularly exposed.

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