Thursday 18th January 2018
January 18th 2018: Mike van Dulken, head of research at Accendo Markets commented to clients this afternoon: “Equities are mixed around break-even as investors weigh up the first acceleration in China GDP since 2010, solid Industrial Production growth but poor Retail Sales. A mixed picture begs questions about, 1) Chinese data, and, 2) measures in place to carefully deflate a credit bubble. The FTSE underperforms, but Miners and Energy are positive, shrugging off GBP strength, suggesting appetite for risk over defensives, as commodity prices are buoyed by corresponding USD weakness. Data and corporate results remain in the driving seat driving ahead of month-end central bank updates (ECB/Fed). The UK FTSE underperforms, dragged lower by HSBC (profit taking, Carillion exposure), ABF (results), SHP (broker preference for Roche), a plethora of defensives (GBP strength, preference for risk) and a handful of ex-dividends. Limited help from Miners (metals up on USD weakness), Energy (Oil prices stable) and HL. Germany’s DAX if just offside, with losses for Utilities (hawkish ECB, exposed to higher rates) offsetting outsized gains for Tech, Autos and Insurance. The FTSE100 has broken below 7715. The DAX30 remains in 13140-13345 range. Dow Jones Futures continue to push for fresh highs above 26150. Gold is off its lows, nearing a test of yesterday's $1332 breakdown -

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Friday, 04 January 2013

Battlemap of the Exchanges

LiquidMetrix provides FTSE Global Markets with analysis into major European indices and ranks the competing trading venues based on trading volumes, spreads, order book depths and the percentage of the time they offer the absolute best European prices.

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The quarterly survey of the asset management industry in the Middle East and North Africa region has three aims: to describe the investment outlook of a diverse range of asset management firms in the Middle East region; to assess the perception of political/economic risk within the region and to outline current thinking among the asset management industry as to what infrastructure is important to the proper functioning of their businesses. These elements still remain core to the findings in each quarterly survey. Even so, each has its own character: in part determined by macro-issues; in part determined by the range of respondents.

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The third iteration of the Middle East Asset Management survey, which we undertake under the auspices of the Qatar Financial Centre Authority (QFCA), brings into vivid relief a number of important trends. Bifurcation in investment approaches has become stronger over the last two quarters: domestic investors are investing more domestically and international investors are increasing their cross-border allocations. Two, civil and political unrest continues to impact selected markets, with Lebanon, Jordan, even Kuwait feeling an investor pinch as local asset managers upscale their risk assessments on these countries. Bahrain and Egypt too continue to feel the repercussions of the Arab Spring; however a move towards more positive investor sentiments is apparent. In contrast, investors continue to be optimistic about Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Oman in the region; and about South America and Africa outside it. Dubai too has benefitted as investors and corporations have uprooted and moved in many instances to the UAE. The survey also throws up interesting news for international providers of securities services in the MENA region. HSBC emerges as a clear regional front-runner among the 83 investors polled. Among the key trends to watch are growing investor frustration with constrained liquidity and inadequate regulation covering the region’s capital markets, which they say, will have long term effects on the efforts by individual markets to develop as regional financial hubs. Research by Henry Blanchard, Lydia Koh and Rebecca O’Brien.

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At a time of huge change in the international investment markets, and the continuing challenge of a global economy still mired in the aftershocks of the 2008-2009 financial crises, the asset management sector in the Middle East is on the brink of a new era. That epoch will hopefully involve a deepening of the asset management segment. However, given continuing market uncertainties and the still bubbling brook of popular discontent in some countries in the region, meaningful moves towards market change might just as easily be cut down by the vagaries of socio-political fortune (which vary so widely across the region). Whatever the outcome (and it will be different in each country), if any nation wants to develop a top ranking financial centre in this century, then a significant strengthening of the asset servicing and asset management industry must form part of any meaningful strategy. This survey goes part way to underscoring the importance of this fact.

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In issue 60 we kicked off a year-long review of the Middle East asset management industry and its risk outlook for 2012/2013. The year long survey, which comprises polling of a cross section of investment firms located in the region mixed with more informal comment, has three aims: to describe the current investment outlook of a diverse range of asset management firms in the Middle East region; to assess the perception of political/economic risk within the region and to outline current thinking among the asset management industry as to what infrastructure is important to the proper functioning of their businesses. Three months on from the first survey (please refer to issue 60, page 56) set the underlying scene. Subsequently, we spoke to 47 out of the original 79 respondents to see whether the risk outlook for the region had altered. We will provide a further update in the October edition. This short snapshot concentrates on the way that institutional investors in the Middle East and North Africa region view political and economic risks.

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This report reflects the results of a detailed telephone survey of 118 buy side traders across the EMEA region. The survey is dominated by trading desks of long only investment firms (48.1%), though the range of assets traded is, according to one trader, “growing all the while”. What comes across from the survey is a market segment that understands the growing complexity of the trading landscape and is confident working within it. Regulation is taking its toll and the buy side trader is having to be aware of a plethora of market trends and developments. The good news is, they are on top of it. What does this mean, long term, for the sell side? Francesca Carnevale summarises some of the findings and puts them in the context of market change. For information on the rest of the survey findings, please visit: www.ftseglobalmarkets.com for access to the full report.

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Through July 2011, in the calm before the storm that characterised the capital markets through August and which wiped billions off the value of most of the world’s leading pension funds, we decided to undertake a determined survey of the changing relationship between the buy side and the sell side in the wake of the financial crisis and the subsequent raft of legislation pulsating through Europe. We anticipated widespread understanding of the crosswinds of regulation and preparatory initiatives leading up to regulation among the pension fund community. What we found was quite different, and a little bit worrisome. Francesca Carnevale reports on the key findings.

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