P1 Weekly Market Update

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  • January 15, 2019

UK GDP Slows

Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that the three-month rolling measure of GDP in the UK slowed in November falling to 0.3%, down from 0.6% in the third quarter. The service sector continued to be the biggest contributor to economic growth, although a contraction in manufacturing and production dragged the headline figure lower. Furthermore, recent data suggests that the final month of the year may also be challenging. Retailers reported a difficult Christmas trading period, citing consumer caution ahead of Brexit as a primary reason. Nevertheless, real incomes are now growing, and if the political clouds clear, the economy could see a rebound as individuals and companies release some stifled demand.

US Inflation Falls

Inflation figures in the US released last week showed that annual price growth slowed to 1.9% in December, down from 2.2% in November and in-line with expectations. The primary driver of the decrease was lower fuel costs, with gasoline prices falling 7.5% month-on-month. Furthermore, the fall in oil prices has not entirely passed through to inflation figures, as crude price changes can take up to a year to fully materialise. This should continue to suppress headline inflation over the coming months.  While core inflation remains above the 2% Federal Reserve target, the lower level of headline inflation will increase calls for the central bank to slow down or pause its programme of interest rate rises. Markets are already pricing in a pause in the Fed policy so any deviation from this may prove to be a surprise.

Markets rise from lows

Following a slightly bumpy start to the year global equity markets and risk assets have rebounded somewhat from the lows seen at the end of 2018. While none of the significant market risks has subsided, some bargain hunting has taken place following such a sharp fall in asset values. Furthermore, some more positive noises surrounding the US-China trade war negotiations has given investors hope that one of the major negative risk factors may be resolved soon. At a company level, the US earnings season will provide investors with an insight into the real state of the economy and whether or not current share prices are realistic. 

Market Data

IndexOpenCloseChange% Change
FTSE 10068376918811.18%
S&P 50025312596652.57%
Dax10767108871201.11%
Cac 4047374781440.93%
Nikkei 22519561201636023.08%
UK 10 Year Gilt Yield1.241.290.054.03%
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Posted By Will Dickson

Chief Investment Officer Will Dickson is a Chartered Wealth Manager as part of the Chartered Institute of Securities and Investment (CISI) qualification scheme. This recognition was obtained following an MSc in Finance and Investment from the University of Exeter, and an Accounting and Finance BSc from the University of Bath. Will’s exceptional talent is recognised by CityWire’s Wealth Manager, having been named as one of the UK’s Top 30 investment managers under the age of thirty for the last three years. Will manages and oversees P1’s range of investment portfolios. Working with the Investment Team, Will shapes the investment policy and fund selection for our Passive, Hybrid and Ethical and Sustainable portfolios. In conjunction with managing the fund portfolios, he oversees and our AIM Inheritance Tax and Tier 1 Investment Visa equity portfolios. Will has joint written articles with P1’s Head of Research, Dr Rayer. Their article “Hypothesis: Risk, like Mass and Energy, can neither be created nor destroyed” featured in the CISI’s The Review of Financial Markets. In addition to contributing to articles with Dr Rayer, Will often delivers P1 CISI Endorsed lectures to Independent Financial Advisers. You can see Will’s take on weekly investment news here.