Month: January 2022

Where are the markets heading?

If markets were like coin tosses (or perfectly efficient), you’d expect a two standard deviation event to happen every 44 years, says Grantham. As it stands, GMO reckons they happen in markets every 35 years. That makes sense if you believe that investors are not as narrowly rational as they’re cracked up to be, and that emotion-led manias are regular occurrences.

Now, however, we’ve gone even beyond the “normal” bubble. Instead, says Grantham, the US specifically is in a “super bubble”, having moved three standard deviations from the trend.

This is the sort of thing that should only happen once every 100 years. It’s not quite that rare, but Grantham reckons it’s only been seen on five other occasions: US stocks in 1929 and 2000 (the tech bubble); US housing in 2006; plus Japanese stocks and property in the late 1980s.

“All five of these greatest of all bubbles fell all the way back to the trend.” Grantham notes that if the S&P 500 does the same from here, it could end up dropping to 2,500 (it’s currently around 4,500).

First, as I always say, don’t panic. Apart from anything else, why would you? You’re sensible enough to be diversified. Diversification is key to smooth out any increase in inflation and market corrections. Ensure that your portfolio reflects your strategy and investment goals.

Money Week

UK after Brexit

Life is about choosing between alternatives and trade-offs. Brexit may only be marginally better than remaining in the EU. And it may take a long time to reveal this divergence.

To explain my point, consider this: I sort of doubt that UK politicians rank dramatically higher than EU politicians in the eyes of the public. And still, that small difference may matter.

Similarly, the UK hasn’t embraced the sorts of policies which will deliver all the benefits Brexit puts on offer for us. But it has adopted some of them.

Enough theory though – today’s message is that the benefits of Brexit are already emerging. The evidence is coming in. And it is adding up.

The first example comes from the OECD, which expects the UK to be the fastest growing economy in the G7 in 2021 – the year of Brexit!

It’s performing so well that, “Bank of England First Among Major Central Banks to Raise Rates” reported Barrons.

Notice the word “major” there. Those who see the UK as a “little England” that cannot compete on the global stage… well, why can our central bank be called “major” then?

But that’s not the point here. The point is that the UK economy recovered faster than others, requiring tighter monetary policy to rein in its recovery earlier than others. Or, as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned, “demand was too strong in the economy”.

And that divergence is set to continue. The IMF and Goldman Sachs have the UK outgrowing the G7 and other developed economies around the world, and the broader EU too, in 2022.

In fact, it’s set to grow faster than China. It’s also set to grow faster than US President Joe Biden’s stimulus flooded United States, not to mention faster than the euro area.

It’s no wonder an Ipsos MORI poll had rejoiner sentiment at just 24%, with 34% believing that Brexit had been the right choice.

Fortune & Freedom