Original thinkers

Phil Milburn: Bond markets - can investors afford to ignore them?

In the developed world, government bond markets have suffered from a decade of “financial repression,” meaning the income you receive has not kept up with the rate of inflation. In the autumn of 2018, markets for riskier financial instruments such as equities noticed there was a great big elephant in the room: the bond market.

Paul Major: Med tech advances support case for healthcare investments

The NHS is to many akin to a state religion. In the summer, prime minister Theresa May promised to inject an extra £20 billion a year into the NHS by 2023-24, with taxpayers helping foot the bill. However, despite the NHS’s vaunted status, criticism of the service comes daily. The irresistible force of the UK’s ageing population collides with the immovable object that is finite funding, with depressing frequency.

John Bennett: Europe or US? Europe is a surer bet for value and growth stocks

As a fund manager I’ve never been too fond of the idea of “talking up the asset class”, which in my case would have meant extolling the virtues of European equities. I’ve always felt that doing so risks becoming an apologist for a region or an asset class, thereby risking at least some element of self-serving disingenuousness. 

But my temporary departure from this way of thinking is due to what we perceive as the prospect of an inflection point on the horizon.

Rosemary Banyard: how to spot an unconstrained fund manager

With the rise and rise of index tracker funds and baskets of exchange traded futures, it is now easy and cheap to get broad investment exposure to the UK equity market. A FTSE 100 tracker will give you coverage of roughly 85% of the FTSE All-Share index, yet the IA UK all companies sector still offers a choice of over 250 open-ended general UK equity funds, most of which would call themselves active.

Fundsmith’s Terry Smith: forecasters are like Michael Fish

Tumult, turbulence and turmoil are just the words beginning with the letter T used by commentators to describe the behaviour of stock markets in October. I think it’s always good to look at the definition of the words we are being asked to accept. For example: turmoil, noun: a state of great disturbance, confusion, or uncertainty . synonyms: confusion, upheaval(s), turbulence, tumult, disorder.

Tread warily in bond markets

January 21, 2014

With the tapering of quantitative easing, UK gilts are set for another poor year in 2014, especially if US bond yields rise once more.

Why equities win in the ugly contest

January 20, 2014

Alastair Mundy of Investec says investors must choose between negative real returns from bonds and unattractively priced equities.