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Articles tagged as "Economy"

COVID-19: Portfolio, economic and investment update

By Duncan Artus on 01 Jun 2020

During February and March, we were active in both the local equity and fixed income markets. This activity reduced during April and May, as we believed the...

Do bonds offer opportunity in a post COVID-19 world?

By Londa Nxumalo on 28 May 2020

As investors we must think about what the world will look like when the pandemic has passed, and what asset classes offer opportunity. Presenting via Zoom...

The monetary and fiscal response to the COVID-19 crisis

By Sandy McGregor on 27 May 2020

The Coronavirus pandemic has caused a massive disruption of global economic activity without peacetime precedent. In a presentation via Zoom webinar, Sandy...

Q&A: Understanding the economic context in which we must invest

By Grant Pitt on 27 May 2020

As investors, we must understand the economic consequences of COVID-19 and the impact on different asset classes. Grant Pitt, joint head of Institutional...

Q&A with Allan Gray and Orbis: Investing beyond COVID-19

By Tamryn Lamb on 26 May 2020

While financial market volatility as a result of COVID-19 is expected to continue over the short term, the investment teams at Allan Gray and Orbis are focus...

Investing during lockdown and beyond

By Duncan Artus on 25 May 2020

Sometimes in investing, the best thing to do is nothing. In a presentation to advisers and clients via Zoom webinar, Duncan Artus examined the levels and...

Perspectives and portfolio positioning amid COVID-19

By Andrew Lapping on 08 May 2020

The world as we know it has changed dramatically over the last two months, with the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown strategies causing extreme volatility on t...

Opinion: Counting the economic cost of South Africa’s lockdown

By Andrew Lapping on 07 May 2020

As South Africans, we want our country to prosper and the quality of life for all those living within our borders to improve. Millions live in total poverty...

The world after the COVID-19 pandemic

By Sandy McGregor on 23 Apr 2020

We are witnessing a global economic collapse without precedent in modern times. As investors we must think about what the world will look like when the...

Positioning our portfolios for growth beyond COVID-19

By Andrew Lapping on 23 Apr 2020

The speed at which the financial market swings from despair to elation is astounding. The past few months have seen no shortage of mood swings as investors...

The end of the free lunch

By Mark Dunley-Owen on 17 Apr 2020

There is no such thing as a free lunch. Yet recent times have provided South African savers with something close to this, as risk-free returns from money...

COVID-19: Looking to history to understand potential outcomes

By Stephan Bernard on 09 Apr 2020

With much of the world in lockdown, one wonders whether it is appropriate to draw on past analogies in thinking about what lies ahead. However, every prior...

COVID-19: Q&A with Allan Gray portfolio managers

By Tamryn Lamb on 08 Apr 2020

With many countries in lockdown, uncertainty prevails. Against this backdrop, many clients are asking for our views on the economic impact, an update on our...

Impact of Moody's downgrade

By Sandy McGregor on 30 Mar 2020

As a consequence of the decision by Moody’s to lower South Africa’s credit rating from Ba1 to Baa3, all three leading rating agencies now rate South African...

COVID-19: Supporting umbrella fund members through the lockdown

By Saleem Sonday on 25 Mar 2020

As we enter into lockdown, Saleem Sonday, head of group savings and investments, reassures umbrella fund members that the trustees continue to ensure that...

COVID-19: Evaluating market risk versus opportunity

By Duncan Artus on 25 Mar 2020

We have managed our portfolios through a range of different crises since 1974. Over the last 20 years, the dotcom collapse in 2001/02, the global financial...

COVID-19: We remain open for you during the lockdown

By Tamryn Lamb on 25 Mar 2020

As we enter into lockdown, Tamryn Lamb, head of retail distribution, reassures investors that we are open during this most unsettling time. She also provides...

Coronavirus: Taking stock of the state of the markets

By Andrew Lapping on 19 Mar 2020

The world is changing extremely fast. The global business shutdown is unlike anything seen outside wartime. It is impossible to know the length or depth of t...

How will current market conditions impact our portfolios?

By Radhesen Naidoo on 11 Mar 2020

The start of 2020 has been tumultuous as fears about the coronavirus have dominated the news and global markets. The resulting volatility has been compounded...

Making sense of current market conditions

By Andrew Lapping on 09 Mar 2020

The current market volatility is understandably causing investors much stress. Andrew Lapping examines the impact of coronavirus and the drop of the oil pric...

2020 Budget: Stuck between a rock and a hard place

By Carla Rossouw on 25 Feb 2020

A revenue shortfall of R50bn was announced in the Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) in October 2019, and this sets the scene for the 2020 Budget....

How could a ratings downgrade affect investors?

By Sehrish Khan on 13 Feb 2020

Inundated with reports of failing state-owned enterprises and spiralling government debt, investors are understandably concerned ahead of South Africa’s 2020...

Platinum can move the needle on the economic growth SA so desperately needs

By Tim Acker on 07 Feb 2020

Platinum Group Metals (PGMs) are proving to be market darlings: In the last 12 months platinum prices have soared by 30%, palladium prices have doubled, and...

Inflation

By Sandy McGregor on 29 Jan 2020

Inflation is a phenomenon of great importance to investors. It is subject to intense scrutiny but is not well understood. Sandy McGregor offers his perspecti...

Should you invest in bonds?

By Londa Nxumalo on 29 Jan 2020

The recent performance of South African bonds – which have outperformed cash and equities over three and five years – has prompted investors to ask whether...

Global growth slows

By Sandy McGregor on 13 Jan 2020

Over the past year, global economic growth has slowed. International trade volumes have contracted. This slowdown has many causes but has been significantly...

Negativity can often present opportunity

By Duncan Artus on 23 Oct 2019

With doom and gloom pervading locally, and the world economy slowing, you may be feeling like the safest place for your money is under your mattress. This is...

An age of anxiety

By Sandy McGregor on 22 Oct 2019

We are living in an age of anxiety. After decades in which the norm has been optimism, everywhere market participants are extremely nervous about evolving an...

Economic update: A state of stagnation

By Sandy McGregor on 11 Oct 2019

Global economic conditions continue to deteriorate but so far, no major economy has entered a recession. Business conditions in Europe and Japan are best...

Making sense of the rand

By Linda Kallis on 10 Oct 2019

Like other emerging market currencies, the rand has seen periods of prolonged fluctuation since September 2018 but has remained relatively stable over time....

South African investors need to fall out of love with equities

By Kevin Lings on 30 Jul 2019

South Africa’s equity market capitalisation equates to more than 200% of the country’s GDP, the highest proportion in the world and a level that is simply no...

Is it time for equity investors to party like it’s 2002?

By Duncan Artus on 30 Jul 2019

Not quite, says Duncan Artus.

Trade wars

By Sandy McGregor on 29 Jul 2019

In recent months, we have observed increasing uncertainty and concern among our clients about what impact rising international tensions, particularly the tra...

Global business conditions deteriorate

By Sandy McGregor on 12 Jul 2019

Negative news about the global economy persists. Purchasing manager indices continue to signal a widespread deterioration in business conditions. Even in the...

Valuations matter

By Andrew Lapping on 11 Jun 2019

Uncertainty abounds at present. Equity returns for the past few years have been underwhelming, political upheaval locally and internationally is causing wave...

Finding value in frontier African markets

By Nick Ndiritu on 29 Apr 2019

Across corporate boardrooms in South Africa, a number of management teams and institutional investors are grappling with a vexing question: Is investing in...

Global slowdown continues to take its toll

By Sandy McGregor on 26 Apr 2019

The synchronous global slowdown, which commenced in the last quarter of 2018, continues to take its toll. While Europe is not in recession, it has returned t...

How you can influence your investment outcomes

By Lettie Mzwinila on 16 Apr 2019

After an undeniably tough 2018, the local market staged a turnaround during the first quarter. But the atmosphere in the country is blowing hot and cold: As...

South Africa's fiscal dilemma

By Sandy McGregor on 25 Jan 2019

Faced with sky-high debt, a stagnant economy and disappointing tax collections, South Africa is on an unsustainable fiscal path. Difficult choices have to be...

Global growth accelerates but emerging markets under pressure

By Sandy McGregor on 05 Oct 2018

Following a slower first quarter, the rate of global economic growth accelerated during the Northern Hemisphere summer, with Europe being the only notable...

How to thrive in choppy markets

By Andrew Lapping on 23 Aug 2018

This year has been characterised by increased volatility and concern about the global risks – from trade disputes to inflation. After a strong start to the...

Increasing policy uncertainty

By Sandy McGregor on 20 Jul 2018

With few exceptions, notably India, most countries experienced slower economic growth in the first quarter of 2018. Anecdotal evidence suggests that that the...

SA needs to unlock its 'demographic dividend' by getting the private sector to invest

By Kevin Lings on 18 Jul 2018

South Africa needs to stop looking to government spending as the catalyst for economic growth and should instead foster a more conducive environment for...

Approaching a tipping point?

By Sandy McGregor on 30 Jun 2018

After a strong start to the year, global investors have been spooked by a diverse combination of developments, including a slowdown in global economic...

Business confidence improves in South Africa

By Sandy McGregor on 13 Apr 2018

After 18 months of accelerating growth, the momentum of the expansion of the global economy slowed in the first quarter of 2018.  It is noteworthy that an...

How are our portfolios positioned to protect and grow our clients' capital?

By Duncan Artus on 24 Jan 2018

Regular readers of our commentaries would have noted that we have found an increasing number of attractive opportunities in local equities over the last 18...

Fixing the South African economy

By Sandy McGregor on 24 Jan 2018

If we can make necessary changes domestically, favourable global business conditions will support a rapid economic turnaround. Now that the ANC conference is...

What can be done to address SA’s fiscal crisis?

By Sandy McGregor on 12 Jan 2018

Global economic activity continued to gain momentum in the last quarter of 2017. Global purchasing manager’s indices, which are a good barometer of current a...

The value of bitcoin

By Jacques Plaut on 24 Oct 2017

The total market value of all bitcoins is US$80bn, which is more than the value of Richemont and triple the value of Anglo American. It is the topic on which...

Facing a fiscal crisis

By Sandy McGregor on 13 Oct 2017

The synchronised global economic expansion continues to gain momentum. World trade is growing and increasing demand is putting upward pressure on commodity...

Is now the time to invest?

By Todd Buchholz and Andrew Lapping on 12 Oct 2017

Is it time to put your money under the mattress or is it time to invest? Watch this 7-min clip with Andrew Lapping, our chief investment officer, and Todd...

Global jitters: Avoid safe havens, opportunity in overlooked sectors

By Dan Brocklebank on 15 Sep 2017

The uncertain global political and economic backdrop created by unexpected recent shocks has spooked investors. However fear, particularly when spurred by...

How to be a discerning investor

By Andrew Lapping on 25 Aug 2017

Negative sentiment and lower expectations for future growth are sending investors scurrying...

If South Africa was a company would you include it in your portfolio?

By Mark Dunley-Owen on 04 Aug 2017

Sentiment towards South Africa is poor. It is tempting to believe that excessive bad news is priced into South African assets, which should deliver attractiv...

The economics of taxation

By Sandy McGregor on 20 Jul 2017

An efficient tax system is a necessary feature of a modern state. Taxes have always been a focus of political concern, even when, by modern standards...

SA economy in the doldrums as the rest of the world picks up

By Sandy McGregor on 14 Jul 2017

Since January, domestic demand in South Africa has been very weak, the clearest evidence of which has been poor retail sales. The consumer is no longer in a...

South Africa at a political crossroad

By Sandy McGregor on 04 Apr 2017

The political events of the last 10 days, and the resulting ratings downgrade by S&P Global Ratings, have seriously eroded investor confidence in South Afric...

Keep calm and carry on investing

By Andrew Lapping on 17 Jan 2017

The past 12 months seem to have passed particularly swiftly, maybe because fundamentally very little changed. Interestingly, the light in which investors vie...

The winds of change

By Sandy McGregor on 06 Jan 2017

While the election of Donald Trump as the next president of the United States was not expected by investors, it does not seem to have been unwelcome:  both t...

A changing world

By Sandy McGregor on 31 Dec 2016

The political shocks of 2016 are a manifestation of rising public discontent about prevailing economic and social conditions. Sandy McGregor provides some...

Money Market Fund update: Rising inflation and low growth continue to cause concern

By Gary Elston on 05 Aug 2016

Global yields have fallen after Brexit became a reality when the UK voted to leave the EU. This uncertainty has decreased the expectation that the US Federal...

Should you invest offshore at R15/US$?

By Tamryn Lamb on 01 Aug 2016

It is exceptionally difficult to decide when is the best time to invest offshore based on news headlines. If you want to get more for what you pay, investing...

Equity Fund update: Volatility presents opportunity

By Ruan Stander on 25 Jul 2016

The economic outlook deteriorated during the second quarter, exacerbated by the British referendum. Although the market’s perception of near-term headwinds m...

How to think about the rand when making investment decisions

By Andrew Lapping on 18 Jul 2016

Over the last few years we have been concerned about the strength of the rand and our portfolios have been positioned for currency weakness. One of our...

Stable Fund update: How to invest in ‘interesting’ times

By Mark Dunley-Owen on 15 Jul 2016

‘May you live in interesting times' is an English expression which many believe to be a translation of a traditional Chinese curse. The expression seems to...

The economic consequences of political decisions

By Sandy McGregor on 06 Jul 2016

The vote by the British electorate in support of leaving the European Union (EU) took markets by surprise. The immediate impact was a strengthening of the US...

Gold: A history of its price

By Sandy McGregor on 30 Jun 2016

Inventories play a significant role in the pricing of commodities: when they are low prices tend to rise, while excessive inventories depress prices. However...

Managing portfolios in times of uncertainty

By Duncan Artus on 24 Jun 2016

My inbox is filling up with commentary about the impact of Brexit. Some of the commentary is of debatable long-term value and with news of this nature it tak...

Broaden your horizons with offshore investments

By Tamryn Lamb on 14 Jun 2016

It is natural to feel uneasy about your finances during times of uncertainty. However, one should be wary of making decisions based on short-term events. The...

Uncertainty persists

By Gary Elston on 20 Apr 2016

The increased uncertainty that arose in December of last year has persisted throughout the first quarter of 2016. The current political climate and the threa...

Annual report from the outgoing Chief Investment Officer

By Ian Liddle on 01 Mar 2016

Adapted from the Chief Investment Officer’s comments, which will appear in the Allan Gray Unit Trust Annual Report, 2015. These are Ian Liddle’s final Annual...

The triumph of the bureaucrats

By Sandy McGregor on 31 Dec 2015

There is a widespread lament that economic growth is disappointing. While demographics and structural problems are largely to blame, the increasing cost of...

Interim investor update

By Rob Dower on 17 Dec 2015

Some clients have asked for an update on how well their investments are doing in the current very volatile market. It’s risky to respond until things have...

Manufacturing in meltdown

By Simon Raubenheimer on 30 Jun 2015

The manufacturing sector is currently in a woeful state. Simon Raubenheimer discusses why we are where we are. 'The Board of Directors has taken the decision...

Secular stagnation: The new normal?

By Sandy McGregor on 30 Jun 2015

Economists are engaged in an interesting debate about economic growth and what has been described as 'secular stagnation'. The issue has received widespread...

What's wrong with the South African economy

By Sandy McGregor on 30 Sep 2014

After growing strongly for 10 years, since 2012 the South African economy has been stagnating, which prompts the question: What has gone wrong and how can th...

Not the time to relax risk appetite

By Ian Liddle on 28 Jan 2013

In his 1988 annual letter to shareholders, Warren Buffett wrote: ‘We have no idea how long the excesses will last, nor do we know what will change the...

Message from our Top 10 equity holdings

By Simon Raubenheimer on 26 Nov 2012

Investors frequently ask us whether or not our choice of shares reveals a particular theme or ‘story’. Investors are also curious as to how we alter our...

Tobacco economics

By Ruan Stander on 30 Jun 2012

Most industries have a single factor that helps investors to understand them better. Unfortunately for investors looking for easy wins, it does not necessari...

The trend is your friend till it bends at the end

By Duncan Artus on 24 May 2012

For some time we have been concerned about the sustainability and unbalanced nature of consumption growth in South Africa. I don’t believe you can consume,...

An era of high global earnings

By Simon Raubenheimer on 30 Sep 2011

Company profits are currently at historic highs, but we do not know with any certainty where they are headed. Although it is entirely possible for global and...

China's Malthusian challenge

By Sandy McGregor on 31 Mar 2011

Two years since the global financial crisis and commodity prices are back at the record levels of June 2008. This growth has been about five years quicker th...

Deflation

By Sandy McGregor on 30 Sep 2010

It seems the world may divide into two distinct camps: the mature economies gripped by deflation and stagnation, and the emerging markets, which continue to...

Another view

By Duncan Artus on 31 Dec 2009

Governments around the world are engaged in significant fiscal and monetary stimulus. But there is some doubt about whether their efforts will improve the re...

The triumph of the markets

By Sandy McGregor on 31 Dec 2009

It is the nature of markets to reward success and eliminate what is unsustainable. During the past year we have seen a dramatic manifestation of this process...

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