Market Comment

Market Comment

The Market Comment is published monthly and sheds light on current topics from the investor's point of view.

Market Comment

“4 minutes with CIO Gérard Piasko”

At the end of June 2022, our Chief Investment Officer, Gérard Piasko, spoke with Marc Jäggi, Head Moderation at Radio 1, about the medium-term monetary policy of the US and Switzerland and the need for further interest rate hikes.

Market Comment

The rise of value stocks

Interest rate hikes and historically elevated inflation are making “value” stocks even more interesting. We already pointed to their potential in April 2021. In this market comment, we shed light on the rotation that has commenced from more expensively valued “high-flyer” IT growth stocks towards more cheaply valued “value” stocks. Will it continue? Or will we see temporary breaks?

Market Comment

Impact of the Ukraine war on the global economy

The financial markets hope that the Ukraine conflict will soon be replaced by “business as usual”. They appear to have got used to the war, as it has not escalated any further to date. Nevertheless, the current state of the conflict, which could last for an extended period, is set to keep inflation historically high. What does it mean for corporate profits and the global economy?

Market Comment

The interest rate turnaround

Since the start of the year, there have been clear signs from the world’s major central banks that they intend to embark on a marked, albeit gradual change in monetary policy. The interest rate turnaround is upon us, with the stimulus provided for global growth and the financial markets being ramped down.

Market Comment

“4 minutes with CIO Gérard Piasko”

Towards the end of March 2022, our Chief Investment Officer, Gérard Piasko, talked to Marc Jäggi, Head of Moderation at Radio 1, about the times of uncertainty stemming from the Ukraine war.

Market Comment

Geopolitical crisis

Geopolitical uncertainty remains high by historical standards. Russia’s attack on Ukraine is not only increasing nervousness and reducing risk appetite in the short term; higher energy costs and, should inflation remain elevated, higher financing costs via interest rate hikes could also see record-high corporate profit margins fall again. What’s more, the so-called “peace dividend” of the past 30 years is in danger.

Market Comment

Volatility, inflation, and other coronavirus trends

In March 2021 we identified seven coronavirus trends. In this Market Comment we highlight a number of other trends influenced by the pandemic that underline the importance of higher-quality investments at times of interest rate and stock market turbulence.

Market Comment

Global economy in flux

The global economy presents a mixed picture at the start of the year. Up until recently all lights were set to green, but now there are a few warning flashes. We must be prepared for a slowdown in economic growth over the next few months and quarters.

Market Comment

3 minutes with CIO Gérard Piasko

In the last video message of the year from our CIO Gérard Piasko, he takes a look back at the performance of the global economy, which has staged a marked recovery during 2021. What forecasts are being made for global economic growth in the new year? Tune in now and watch!

Market Comment

The new US infrastructure programme

Although its economy has returned to good health since the peak of the pandemic in 2020, the US is rolling out another economic programme with the primary aim of improving national infrastructure. This planned government expenditure will provide a boost to future technologies and help modernise America’s transport and electricity networks.

Market Comment

Less QE does not equate to QT

The impending process of “tapering” in the US, i.e. the reduction of quantitative easing (QE) as a tool of monetary policy, revives memories of the “taper tantrum” of 2013. Back then, however, the markets were not alerted to the plans of the US central bank (Fed) at an early stage, and therefore reacted with surprise.

Market Comment

Peak or turning point?

As the fourth quarter gets under way, are we at the turning point for both the economy and the markets? Have we already passed the peak in terms of the economy? The question of quite where we are in the economic cycle will by definition only be possible with hindsight.

Market Comment

The changing face of China

China has changed. Whereas in 2020 the country was still clearly an engine driving economic activity and attracting investors, it has now become a negative factor for the stock markets. What lies behind this?

Market Comment

Profitability and productivity

An important question for equity markets right now is how corporate profit margins will develop going forward. There is a fair amount of uncertainty surrounding this issue, particularly given a backdrop of rising inflation.

Market Comment

How is the Swiss economy doing?

This year, Switzerland – much like other countries – has staged a noticeable economic recovery. But while countries such as the United States owe this mainly to government cash hand-outs, the Swiss economy is managing to recover under its own steam. As a result, the country’s government debt remains moderate, even by international standards. In addition, Switzerland still has lower inflation than other countries. Swiss equities remain attractive.

Market Comment

“4 minutes with CIO Gérard Piasko”

In our new CIO video, Gérard Piasko highlights the situation of European equities: What arguments speak in favour of EU equities? What is lending them support? Where do risks lie? And how are the economy and valuations in the eurozone?

Market Comment

The problem with MMT

Once again in 2021, the popularity of a pragmatic, expansionary monetary policy that provides ongoing stimulus to the economy in all global regions appears to be enduring. This approach to monetary policy can be described as one way of applying so-called “Modern Monetary Theory (MMT)”. Particularly in the US, but also in Europe, the financial markets have so far responded positively to the ballooning of central bank balance sheets. 2022 and 2023 are likely to be the real test for advocates of MMT. Trust in paper currencies could be put to the test.

Market Comment

“3 minutes with CIO Gérard Piasko”

Inflation is currently the big talking-point in the financial markets. What concerns does this give rise to in the short or long term. Where is the inflationary trend coming from? What effects are the higher commodity prices having on consumer prices? How important are the current supply bottlenecks, such as for semiconductors? What implications does inflation have for investors? Our Chief Investment Officer, Gérard Piasko, will provide some conclusive answers to these questions.

Market Comment

Easy come, easy go?

The week of 17 May 2021 brought a dramatic sell-off for most of the cryptocurrencies. Almost no coin or token escaped with losses of less than 30%. What lies behind this severe slump? Does it signify an end to the recent rally? And what does this mean for (potential) investors? We explore all of these questions.

Market Comment

The inflation debate – an update

In last year’s Market Comment “Underestimated inflation debate?”, we pointed out that inflation could potentially be underestimated. In the aftermath of that publication, we adopted an underweight position in bonds relative to equities. In the following article we now provide an update on the inflation debate. The key takeaway is that – for all the uncertainty over the long-term trend – inflation is primarily a cyclical phenomenon. This suggests it would be wise to maintain an underweight fixed-income position.

Market Comment

Value or growth?

A frequently heard discussion in the investor community is the question of “value” or “growth”. In other words, should investors opt for equities with historically low valuations or historically above-average business growth? In this debate between value and growth, balanced consideration of various aspects with an emphasis on robust companies looks like the sensible medium-term strategy.

Market Comment

Consequence of coronavirus: a strengthening of structural trends

The coronavirus crisis is changing our habits and activities. It is accelerating a number of trends that were already evident before the pandemic began. In many cases, these trends are “disruptive”, i.e. they are structurally changing the economy as well as a number of industry sectors and markets at certain breakpoints. We have identified “7 corona trends” that are increasingly affecting our economic environment and seem unlikely to disappear even after a return to “normality”.

Market Comment

Currency market dilemma?

With his economic stimulus plans, the new US President has paused the international currency trends that had been evident for some months. At the same time, America has been calling Switzerland a “currency manipulator”. This will hardly present much of a dilemma for the Swiss National Bank (SNB), which can be expected to make further interventions in the currency markets – if it considers these to be necessary. By contrast, the spread of the coronavirus and the US President’s plans raise questions about the dollar’s future trend.

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