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History can guide Investors on EU Referendum

Seasoned investors know that stockmarket sell-offs eventually offer buying opportunities. Indiscriminate falls in share prices mean bargains are available. But, putting this into practice takes real courage. It is rarely possible to get in at the bottom, so some immediate losses are likely. How can investors make stockmarket volatility pay off? It can be useful […]

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Value investing should be about business resilience

Investing style is how investors typically make sense of their portfolios. Emphasis can be on big or small companies, and labelled as “growth” or “value”. Each person’s style preference will fit their longer term goals, or even just match their own personality or attitude to risk. Investors can gain from clear thinking about style. Unfortunately, […]

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EU Referendum: Investors should be wary of the polls

How should investors prepare for Britain’s referendum on EU membership? Shares were weak ahead of the Scottish referendum and the UK general election, but ultimately it proved right to ignore the opinion polls. Polls can capture a lot of biases and wishful thinking, whereas voting often concentrates the mind. In the polling booth, fear of […]

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The disappointing EU record on financial services

Could financial services take centre stage in the British referendum on EU membership? One of the UK’s strongest sectors now seems to be questioning what EU membership has delivered. A tide of legislation since the financial crisis has hit UK asset managers and banks hard. Asset managers, in particular, are not sure why. A working […]

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Mixed signals for 2016; deflation still the global risk

Investors enter 2016 divided on outlook: economic signals are mixed. The global economy is out of sync; with growth in the UK and US, but a slowdown in the developing world. How should investors position for the year ahead? Investors who were under-weight in oil, mining and industrials in 2015 might be forgiven for feeling […]

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3 key psychological challenges for investors

What are the main challenges to achieving good long term returns? Investors focus mainly on what the stockmarket might do; less so on their own behaviour. Some of the human behaviour that confers advantage in everyday life can drive poor investment decisions. The big challenges include; how we search for patterns and trends, the desire […]

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PwC Survey shows slow progress on UK executive pay and bonuses.

The latest PwC survey on executive pay and rewards in the FTSE 100 is presented as an improving trend. Yet it is remarkable that just 36% make full disclosure of bonus benchmarks. There is little sign of realism in incentives; many rewards remain detached from sustainable value creation. Too many do not disclose numbers to […]

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Why are commodities over-represented in indices?

Do investors have an outdate view of commodities? Far from helping to diversify portfolios, or representing a tangible way to benefit from economic growth, commodities have become volatile financial plays. A misguided view of the nature of these assets has resulted in them being over-represented in indices. Indeed, many passive investors may be surprised to […]

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Why was Volkswagen in ESG and Sustainable Investing Funds?

Responsible investing must come clean about Volkswagen. Too many funds rated it highly on Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG). Collateral damage will run well beyond the car sector. Already, the scandal has tarnished the brands of Volkswagen and Germany, with their reputations for trust and engineering excellence. But it is not just about mis-selling cars. […]

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Investors love stories, but no happy ending for Emerging Markets

Investors love a good story, but the latest chapter of the emerging markets growth story has come as a nasty surprise to many. There may be much worse to come. Narratives can help to make sense of facts and figures. Stories can convey meaning, by joining up often unrelated information, and they offer hope. But […]

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