This time last year we were on the brink of an unpredicted and unpredictable UK General Election and unexpectedly loud tightening noises from UK and US central banks. Still markets remained mostly becalmed. Given how 2018 is panning out, I’ll be amazed if this summer passes without drama. Investors are getting to grips with so … More What I’m watching this summer (Part 1)
Making predictions is always daunting – this year more than most. Nevertheless, we’re going to look beyond current uncertainties to identify trends that will influence the Capital Agenda in 2017 … More And to come in 2017?
..but while there’s liquidity, spare cash and romance let’s face the market and transact! The prevailing corporate attitude in 2015 was to fight disruptive forces, low growth and uncertainty by transforming the portfolio and building resilience. Our base case for 2016 is that companies will face similar challenges, turned up a notch. There’s an air … More Previewing 2016: There may be trouble ahead…
Takeaways: An end to uncertainty, an effective vote of confidence and the repetitive use of the word ‘gradual’ by the FOMC inspired a brief rally in most equity and bond markets – even in some more vulnerable areas. So, is there really nothing to see here after their 0.25% increase in interest rates? Not quite. The … More The Fed awakens!
Recent terrorist attacks cast a long shadow across the world and our thoughts are with all those affected. It is impossible to sum up all we have lost and make instant assessments of how much will change – and we’re not going to attempt that here. This is obviously a fluid situation and there will … More Tho’ much is taken, much abides
Takeways: This week we’re bringing you a ‘back to school’ edition of the blog – although, judging from this summer’s level of activity, it doesn’t look like many of you spent that much time away from your desk. Nevertheless, we thought it would be a good time to put together our thoughts on what the … More What could the rest of 2015 hold?
Takeaways: Last week’s engineered fall in the Renminbi was actually pretty modest, certainly in the context of the currency’s recent appreciation. More significant is what the move signalled – or more pertinently the market interpretation of those signals in the context of the un-virtuous circle of weak Chinese demand, falling commodities prices, a stronger dollar … More It’s not what you said, it’s how you said it…from China to CGOs
Takeaways: M&A activity usually winds down in summer, but July brought another US$500b+ of deals and August has started in the same vein. Why so active? In low growth markets, M&A – or more precisely a robust approach to capital allocation – is looking like one of the best ways for companies to outperform their … More M&A records hit for six
Takeaway: Of course Greece isn’t out of the woods. We remain convinced that the only sustainable way forward is through debt reconstruction. It’s not off the table, but it’s not on it either. So, whilst this debate remains parked on a hostess trolley in Brussels, we’re going to ask a few questions to help take … More What’s next? Seven questions, six charts and two illuminating deals.
Takeways: In some areas of the market it might feel a bit, well 2006-7. The rise in M&A ‘mega deals’, for instance, which could drive overall deal values to record highs in 2015. However, this M&A cycle differs in one vital respect: financial discipline. It’s a somewhat notable trait given the highly tempting yields on … More Disciplined M&A, unruly markets and emerging problems