David Prosser

Could cash be king after all?

Ask any stockmarket old hand for a few words of wisdom that investors should abide by and it won’t be long before you hear the phrase “run a profit, cut a loss”. Intuitively, that makes sense – why would you not cash out of an underperforming investment before your losses spiral, or hold on to a winner for as long as it keeps delivering?

Deal yourself a winning Brexit hand with our expert tips

So it goes on. ­The UK began 2019 as it ended 2018: mired in a fractious debate about how to exit the European Union on 29 March – or not. And for investors, this uncertainty continues to take its toll, both on their portfolios, as market volatility persists, and on their nerves, as they try to p lot a path through the year ahead. ­

The Long View: is water the new oil promising a flood of returns?

Yes, if you believe Jean-Louis Chaussade, chief executive at French utility company Suez. Explaining his company’s recent $3.5 billion (£2.7 billion) purchase of General Electric’s water business, he told the Financial Times that the day is coming when water will cost more than the black stuff.

How to profit and protect your investments from macro noise

What does 2019 have in store for the investment trust sector?

Investors will be hoping for a better year after a dif­ficult 2018. However, while there is cause for optimism, 2019 looks likely to be another year in which the macro dominates the micro. The political and economic drivers that have delivered a rollercoaster ride over the past year haven’t gone away. Expect more thrills and spills.

The long view: should investors completely avoid high street retailers?

Retailers are calling 2018 the year of crisis. By the end of October, almost 3,500 stores on the UK’s high streets had shut their doors for good during 2018, according to the Centre for Retail Research (CRR), resulting in the loss of 49,600 jobs. Retail specialists have been forecasting the death of the high street for some time, but this has been the year in which those predictions have really started to come true.

How to profit from an ageing population

Danica May Camacho grabbed her 15 minutes of fame early. On her birth, on 31 October 2011 in Manila, Danica was officially anointed the world’s seven billionth person – a human moment in a story of demographic change that is usually told through statistics.

The Long View: the end of oil?

There has been a mountain of speculation about when the world will finally reach peak oil, that much-feared moment when the planet’s reserves begin to run out and production starts to inexorably decline.

However, the answer to the conundrum may surprise you: while economists and politicians have spent much of the past two decades fretting about peak oil, there is a growing consensus that this turning point will never be reached – or at least not in the foreseeable future.

Will fund boards achieve a better deal for investors?

Though couched in regulatorspeak, the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA’s) verdict was damning. ‘It is important the asset management industry, which looks after the savings of millions of investors, is working as well as possible,’ said executive director Christopher Woolard in May, as he unveiled the final results of the FCA’s two-and-a- half year investigation into asset managers and the open-ended funds they run.

Does it matter if fund managers have ‘skin in the game’?

Even the staunchest allies of the UK’s asset management industry must concede this is a business where the professionals too often get rich even when their clients get poorer. This, after all, is the complaint that has driven the astonishing growth of passive fund management in recent years, as many investors have simply got fed up of paying through the nose for active funds that don’t deliver.