With the world in lockdown and experiencing the worst recession in living memory, was the recent trend towards Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) a luxury afforded by the longest bull market in living memory?
View of the Day
This year, equities experienced the sharpest collapse in history as the Covid-19 pandemic made many panic and try to preserve capital. In fact, such extremes of market sentiment are often fertile conditions for capital deployment, with the richest returns for those willing and able to swim against the tide. But with threats of a both a second wave, along with prolonged economic weakness, where should investors places their bets now? In companies that have been hit hardest by the disruption, or those that can continue to grow despite it?
Did you know that some of Europe’s most established companies in the luxury goods and technology arena started life in the small-cap universe?
Over the years, the most important lesson we have learned is that human ingenuity is unlimited. Invention is a constant feature of the European small-cap universe. Time and time again, I’ve had the privilege of observing the creation of many new technologies, new consumer brands and new service models.
After any period of decent performance, fund managers tend to be congratulated for their skill in managing their funds. Those who have a bit of grey hair and an ounce of humility - possibly a rare character trait in the industry - are wise to keep a level head and acknowledge the fact that managing money is difficult and not always highly correlated with effort.
We don’t need no education
We don’t need no thought control
No dark sarcasm in the classroom
Teacher, leave them kids alone
Pink Floyd, Another Brick in the Wall
It can be a difficult subject, but the coronavirus crisis has focused the importance of will creation and legacy planning in many people’s minds, and will writers are reporting surges in enquiries as individuals seek to get their affairs in order.
About 250 million years ago, some 96% of animal and plant species perished in what is considered to be the largest of the five mass extinction events on Earth.
The catastrophe was caused by a series of natural disasters – among them, huge volcanic eruptions in Siberia that blasted billions of tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and raised global temperatures by 10 degrees.
Amid the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic, Japan is navigating the greatest economic contraction since the end of the Second World War.
Before the coronavirus hit, I asked if populists could govern as populists? At the time, markets were worried by the rise of anti-Euro populism in the European Union, and by some of the views of Donald Trump in the US and Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil. Some investors were troubled by their attacks on parts of the established world and governmental order based on treaties and world institutions.
Satellite images reveal the extent to which pollution has fallen in cities around the world since lockdowns have been introduced. The difference is huge in places such as Delhi where a fog of pollution normally hangs over the city. Blue sky has now appeared. This situation is repeated all around the world.