The wealth-management industry is in the midst of some seismic changes at present. The traditional channels through which money has been managed and advice dispensed are now being decisively disrupted. And as a result, those who are being affected the most—from multi-billion-dollar hedge funds to retail investors managing their own portfolios—are now operating in an almost entirely new landscape.
Robotics has long been touted as the next big wave that will boost efficiency, increase customer satisfaction and, most importantly, slash costs and maximize profits. Robo-advisors are now entrenched in the investment industry, but most of these firms are not experiencing all of the benefits of automation; in fact, many of them are losing money. What are the main factors cheating robo-advisors of profitability?
The oil price affects all of us, so its movements are a popular target of speculation. So far in 2019, the oil price has been tracking upward, and oil-market watchers are asking themselves if it could hit $100 per barrel soon. The definitive answer remains elusive, as the multiple and at times conflicting elements that determine the price of oil are in a word: complicated. Stay tuned as OPEC meets in June.
Impact investing, which places social and environmental goals as equal partners with risk and reward, is continuing to reshape the financial sector worldwide. One example is the new impact-focused Scottish Stock Exchange, which will require companies seeking to list to meet the demands of today’s socially conscious investor. Capital markets are in a state of flux within a changing world, and it is incumbent upon all financial-sector players to face this reality.
Singapore has much to celebrate. Along with Hong Kong, it is regarded as one of Southeast Asia’s top financial hubs. Although these rivals match each other on many fronts, their stock exchanges do not. Singapore’s SGX is shrinking, while Hong Kong’s stock exchange continues to grow. It’s easy to see that the SGX is ailing but much harder to figure out exactly why—and how to reverse the trend.
Experienced investors know that the most lucrative returns can come in the least attractive packages. Frontier markets, the world’s pre-emerging markets, could be the new frontier for high growth—at least for those investors who can look past the higher risks. Is the frontier market worth those risks? Many investors believe it is, which is why the market is only slightly less popular than its developed and emerging counterparts.
It’s not often that Canadian oil markets require the intervention of the government to put them back on course. In fact, the last time such a scenario transpired was all the way back in 1981. But in late December, that’s just what happened in the province of Alberta, home to the country’s abundant oil-sands industry.
Apple, the producer of the iconic Mac personal computer and trendy iPhone smartphone, succeeded in reaching a milestone that most corporations only dreamt of: becoming the world’s first company to be valued at $1 trillion. A case study in both perseverance and ingenuity, considering that this was a company flirting with bankruptcy in the late 1990s, few companies can afford not to consider the lessons to be learned in Apple’s meteoritic comeback.
Following on from our recent piece, “Five Industries in Which to Invest in 2019”, we now turn our attention to some of the most promising individual stocks within those industries. Looking forward to 2019, each one of the five sectors certainly appears to have some winners.
Despite the record-breaking highs achieved by US stock markets, 2018 is ending with virtually all those gains wiped out. And it’s not just the United States that has suffered. Germany’s DAX, the United Kingdom’s FTSE 100 and Japan’s Nikkei 225 are all ending the year firmly in the red.