We live in interesting times and that’s for sure. Not only is this the title of Mike Wilson’s article on page 8 which looks at China, but more broadly it can equally apply to the Brexit shenanigans which dominate many thoughts of investment managers and advisers as well as the news headlines here in the UK. We can only hope that by the time we publish the next edition of IFA Magazine, the situation will have become a little clearer as to what the future holds.
The Investment Challenge
When it comes to the prospects for investment in China, many investment managers and advisers will be wondering whether the Year of the Pig will turn to be an improvement on last year – the Year of the Dog. In 2018, the Chinese stock market delivered the worst performance of any major Asian country and there is still considerable uncertainty surrounding the outlook for China. Its ongoing trade dispute with the US is still dominating headlines and fears over US tariffs on Chinese products are proving to be very unsettling.
But is the situation for investors really quite as bleak as the some might think? Our own Mike Wilson has China in the spotlight this month, as he scrutinises some of the important factors that are often over-looked when it comes to the world’s second largest economy and highlights some of the key sectors and reasons why it might not be all bad news for investors going forwards.
Still on the investment theme, we talk to James Lawson of Tribe Impact Capital about the power of impact investing and Nicholas Edwards of T8 about the launch of a new Cayman Islands registered fund which uses forex as the basis of delivering its objective. Also we talk to Matthew Ardron and Benedict Yung of Basset & Gold about the appeal of fixed rate bonds which invest via alternative lending.
More broadly, the subject of risk is on Brian Tora’s mind as he looks as some of the concepts and principles which are involved when managing risk within an investment portfolio. Also, Christopher Lyes of Invesco talks about managing risk and the power of diversification helped by their new breed of multi-asset, risk-targeted funds.
With the end of the tax year rapidly approaching, Paul Latham of Octopus reminds us of the benefits of using VCTs and in particular – VCT ISAs.
The Adviser Spotlight
We hear directly from adviser businesses too. We talk to Kevin Homfray of Newell Palmer about life after the merger with Ascot Lloyd and are grateful to him for sharing some tips based on his own experiences, for other IFA businesses which might be considering growth by acquisition. Also we’re grateful to Dawn Walker-Bennett of AFH Wealth Management who tells us about the growth of the business and how the emphasis on putting clients’ needs first has underpinned their success and to Mark Rogers of Succession Wealth, who looks at the importance of professionalism and ethics in financial planning.
Finally, we’re grateful to Keith Richards of the PFS for outlining some of the initiatives which are underway for 2019, to Nick Eatock of Intelliflo for reminding us of the value of effective technology and to Abbie Knight of Embark Group for highlighting why product governance rules introduced under Mifid II are so important. As always, Brett Davidson has extremely practical advice as he reminds us that good business takes creativity as well as effort.
Our thanks go to all contributors for their insight, thoughts and opinions.