Investment updates keeping you informed of the latest economic changes
It seems an age ago that financial markets were functioning normally, and economic growth was chugging along, largely in line with expectations.
The 2020 financial year has made a fair start with few unwanted surprises. However, the two dark clouds that have been overshadowing markets remain in place; US-China trade negotiations, and Brexit.
It’s clear domestic financial markets have been comforted by the re-election of the Coalition Government and the RBA cutting the Official Cash Rate.
Inflation has been absent in major economies around the world for some time, and this absence is again opening the door on monetary policy.
The US Federal Reserve delivered more definitive commentary on their interest rate policy for 2019, and the fact there will not be a rate rise for the year was favourably received.
January has seen an impressive recovery in the S&P 500 from the lows of the December sell-off. However significant uncertainties are still present.
It’s been a tumultuous month in Australian politics. While positive domestic economic news has been scarce, the economy is not experiencing quite the same negative public opinion.
The month of May was predominantly full of positive economic news, particularly out of the US.
While things have been relatively quiet in Europe of late, Italian political turmoil could well boil over and cause significant economic turmoil in the near future.
The end of the financial year looked like it would be ambushed by the return of a geopolitical event, namely
But instability caused by political announcements!
When it comes to economic fundamentals overriding politics, let’s hope the experiences of the past continue into the future.
Volatility is back as the interest rate normalisation
process continues. US tax cuts were just starting to kick in and the latest company earnings were very positive.
While 2016 saw two momentous political events, Brexit and Trump's election, which shocked financial markets, 2017 was far more boring.
We have been enjoying steady market returns in a low volatility environment for many years, but geopolitical tensions during August changed this.
As we look back at the 2017 financial year, we can breathe a sigh of relief that financial markets satisfactorily navigated their way around some potentially disruptive issues.