News & Insights

Economic and market overview - July 2019

Global The US-China trade war dominated global news in June as Presidents Trump and Xi continued to spar around trade tariffs and company sanctions. At the G20 Summit that took place in Japan during the last weekend of the month, the two statesmen agreed to resume trade talks. According to BBC News, this eased a long row that has now contributed to a slowdown in the global economy. Mr Trump said he would allow US companies to continue to sell to the Chinese tech giant Huawei, in a move seen as a significant concession. He also confirmed that the US would not be adding tariffs on $300bn worth...

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Economic & Market Overview - June

Global The trade war between the United States and China took a turn for the worst when President Trump announced an increase (from 10% to 25%) on $200bn worth of Chinese goods early in May. There are a few other geo-political matters that are causing market participants to be jittery, but the US-China relations remain the biggest contributor to the recent increase in market volatility. According to BCA Research, political developments ahead of the 2020 US Presidential election are also adding to uncertainty in the investment outlook. The Democratic Primary race will heat up in June and President...

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Economic & Market Overview - May

Global According to the latest International Monetary Fund (IMF) bi-annual World Economic Outlook, the strong global economic expansion of 2017 and 2018 slowed notably in the second half of last year. It reflects a confluence of factors affecting the major economies around the world. China’s growth declined following a combination of needed regulatory tightening to rein in shadow banking and an increase in trade tensions with the United States. The Euro area economy lost more momentum than expected as consumer and business confidence weakened and car production in Germany was disrupted by the...

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Economic & Market Overview - April

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Global Despite the dim message from current economic data, particularly in Europe, and the recent inversion of the short end of the US Treasury curve, global growth is likely to reaccelerate in the second half of 2019, according to a recent report from BCA Research. Their analysis of global indicators shows that leading industrial, sentiment and even some trade indicators have troughed. Credit growth, a key lubricant of growth momentum in the globally relevant sectors of China’s economy, is no longer decelerating, and is poised to boost global trade in the second half of the year.  Speaking...

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Economic and market overview - February 2019

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Global The International Monetary Fund’s latest World Economic Outlook Update points to a weakening global expansion this year. Global growth for 2018 is estimated at 3.7% despite weaker performance in some economies, notably Europe and Asia. The global economy is projected to grow at 3.5% in 2019 and 3.6% in 2020. The global growth forecast for 2019 and 2020 had already been revised downward before, partly because of the negative effects of tariff increases enacted in the United States and China last year. The further downward revision in part reflects carry over from softer momentum in the...

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Economic & Market Overview – January 2019

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2018, will be marked down by most as a tough year for investment markets. Being conservatively positioned and not losing serious money was the name of the game; to this point global equities were hit hard recently – the S&P500 for example, declined a significant 15% between December 1st and the 26th alone).  In 2018, the South African equity market (as measured by the FTSE/JSE All Share Index) reached a peak of 61 777 versus a low of 50 033 points. The index ended 2018 down 8.5%, its first negative calendar year since the 2008 crisis.    After adjusting for inflation,...

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