Without adjustment on the home front, we believe that President Donald Trump's push to reduce the trade deficit is unlikely to improve the US trade balance, or boost domestic employment and growth. However, his outspoken approach and questioning of the prevailing trade system may be the very jolt that global trade negotiators need to update their thinking and move ahead with a constantly changing global economy and patterns of trade.
Having worked as an equity strategist for well over a decade, I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve had the debate on ‘what happens to equities when bond yields go up?’. And for most of that time bond yields were in the ice age and falling! To cut down on some future deja-vu, here's my Top 7 list of things to consider about equities when bond yields go up.;
“We trust that the government will take all the appropriate actions” – Jean-Claude Trichet. Mario Draghi. That was the sign-off for the now infamous ECB letter sent to Silvio Berlusconi’s government during the height of the European sovereign debt crisis. Nearly seven years on, Italy has once again experienced financial market turmoil and the ECB this week will no doubt be asked many questions about the situation.;
Political risk is back with a vengeance in Italy. As the third largest global issuer of government bonds after the US and Japan, the country is too big to be allowed to fail without severe contagion to the global financial system. However, it is also too big to bail out comfortably using tried and tested mechanisms.;
Remember the EU referendum? The City thought the British public would see the economic benefits of EU membership and not wish to loosen ties with our closest trading partners. Turns out the City was wrong and had misread the mood of the nation. The current discussion around nationalisation has some worrying similarities, so is the City making the same mistake again?;
What happens when babyboomers retire? Have we saved enough for retirement or are we living beyond our means? Academics argue high savings by prime-aged babyboomers in their 'summer' have depressed real interest rates in recent decades. But the community is split as to what happens next as 'winter' comes.;
The US yield curve has consistently flattened since the Federal Reserve began tightening monetary policy several years ago. History strongly suggests that this is an entirely normal market reaction to a rate hiking cycle. If short-term interest rates continue to rise at the pace we expect, we could well be looking at an inverted curve by the middle of 2019.;