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Oliver’s Insights

August 7th, 2018
Nine keys to successful investing

Key points Investing during times of uncertainty can be nerve wracking, but even in good times it can be problematic. For this reason, it’s useful for investors to keep a key set of things – call them rules – in mind. The key … Continue reading

July 26th, 2018
Trumponomics and investment markets

Key points So far President Trump has been positive for share markets but this year the focus is increasingly shifting to populist policies with greater risk for investors. The key risks to keep an eye on in this regard relate to trade conflict … Continue reading

July 19th, 2018
The US economy – does the flattening yield curve indicate recession is imminent?

Key points If you are worried about a major bear market, the US economy is the key to watch. While traditional measures of the US yield curve have flattened sending warning signs about future growth, it has given false signals in the past, … Continue reading

July 4th, 2018
2017-18 saw strong returns for diversified investors – but there’s a few storm clouds around

Key points 2017-18 saw strong returns for diversified investors, but it was a story of two halves with strong December half returns but more volatility in the past 6 months. Key lessons for investors from the last financial year include: … Continue reading

June 28th, 2018
Should the RBA raise rates to prepare households for higher global rates?

Key points The RBA should avoid calls to raise interest rates prematurely just to prepare households for higher global rates. Such a move would be like shooting yourself in the foot in order to practice going to the hospital. Nor … Continue reading

June 21st, 2018
Trade war risks are escalating – but a negotiated solution remains most likely

Key points US actions in recent weeks have increased the risk of a full-blown trade war – primarily between the US and China – with a more significant economic impact. So far the bulk of the tariffs are just proposed so there … Continue reading

June 19th, 2018
Putting the global “debt bomb” in perspective – seven reasons to be alert but not alarmed

Key points Global debt levels have reached new records. Countries with very high gross debt to GDP include Japan, Belgium, Canada, Portugal and Greece. The main areas of rising debt since the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) have been public debt … Continue reading

June 4th, 2018
China’s economy is pretty stable – but what about high debt levels and other risks?

Key points Chinese economic growth has been stable since 2016 at around 6.8%. Expect Chinese growth this year of around 6.5% and inflation of 2.5-3%. Key risks regarding China relate to the policy focus shifting to reducing leverage and reform, rapid … Continue reading

May 22nd, 2018
Italy is a worry - but there’s 3 reasons not to be concerned about an Itexit and Eurozone shares are attractive

Key points A populist coalition government in Italy is negative for Italian assets. Lingering uncertainty about a push for Italy to exit the Euro is likely a negative for the Euro too, though an Itexit and a Euro break up remain unlikely. … Continue reading

May 17th, 2018
An additional 21 great investment quotes

Introduction Investing can be frustrating and depressing at times, particularly if you don’t understand how markets work and don’t have the right mindset. The good news is that the basics of investing are timeless, and some have a knack of encapsulating these in … Continue reading

May 8th, 2018
The 2018-19 Australian Budget – saving a windfall with the hope of (decent) tax cuts to come

Key points The 2018-19 contains a small welcome boost to households and keeps the budget on track for a surplus. The main risk is that the revenue boost seen this year is not sustained & the budget continues to have relatively optimistic assumptions … Continue reading

May 2nd, 2018
After the Australian household debt and east coast housing booms – interest rates on hold until 2020

Key points The RBA has left interest rates on hold for 21 months. A rate hike is now unlikely until 2020: as growth is likely to remain weaker than the RBA expects; wages growth and inflation are likely to remain low for … Continue reading

April 12th, 2018
US China trade war fears – Q & A

Key points President Trump’s actions on trade are mainly aimed at achieving better access for US exports to China and better treatment of US intellectual property by China. They are not primarily aimed at traditional US allies, reducing the risk … Continue reading

April 9th, 2018
Falling Sydney & Melbourne home prices – is this the crash? What about other cities & the impact on the economy?

Key points Property prices in Sydney and Melbourne likely have more downside, but a crash is  unlikely in the absence of much higher mortgage rates, much higher supply and a long continuation of recent high construction activity. Other cities will perform better. Property … Continue reading

March 27th, 2018
Share market volatility - Trump and trade war risks

Key points Worries about the Fed, trade wars (the risk of which has been significantly exaggerated) and President Trump generally have increased the risk around the global outlook but are unlikely to drive a major bear market. The key issue … Continue reading

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