magazine archive

magazine archive

Talking Point

New accounting rule could have a big impact on corporate net debt levels

Thursday 28 Feb 2019

There hasn’t been any fanfare or special announcement, but 1 January saw the introduction of one of the biggest changes in corporate accounting for decades. While analysts and investors will be busy poring over 2018’s results for many weeks to come, for most firms the impact of the new regulations...

Can expensive shares ever offer good value?

Thursday 21 Feb 2019

As investors we’re regularly told to buy low and sell high in terms of valuation. This line of thought often leaves people feeling nervous about buying shares on higher ratings, especially when market exuberance is in short supply. For many investors, buying stocks on a price-to-earnings (PE)...

What sort of annual return should you expect from the stock market?

Thursday 14 Feb 2019

At the end of every year the great and the good of financial markets give their forecasts of where the FTSE 100 and other major indices will be in 12 months’ time. It’s a fruitless exercise because no-one can consistently forecast how much markets are going to gain or lose. As the legendary...

Would the FTSE 100 be better equally weighted?

Thursday 07 Feb 2019

As investors we’re used to looking at the price of indices like the FTSE 100 fairly regularly but it probably never occurs to most of us how the index is constructed or how its value is calculated. Like most indices, its value is calculated by taking the free float London adjusted market value of...

What is the pound’s rally saying about investors’ view of Brexit?

Thursday 31 Jan 2019

Sterling is considered to be the ultimate barometer for Brexit and the currency movement is currently telling us that the market has become more optimistic about how the UK/EU split process will play out. The pound has increased by 4.7% against the US dollar, and by 4.1% against the euro, between...

Why is Germany slowing down?

Thursday 24 Jan 2019

Figures last week from Germany’s Federal Statistical Office showed that gross domestic product ( GDP ) grew by just 1.5% in 2018, the slowest rate for five years. That meant that GDP was barely positive in the fourth quarter, up by an estimated 0.1%. If the fourth quarter had been negative like the...

The City watchdog reveals its key concerns for retail investors

Thursday 17 Jan 2019

A new report from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), a regulator, reveals its current concerns about the financial markets and therefore areas which it might look to clamp down on in the future. In particular, the FCA notes the steady growth in retail investor activity and the challenges that...

How worried should you be about China?

Thursday 10 Jan 2019

A 2 January warning from Apple that sales and earnings for the three months to December were hurt by weak Chinese demand sent a shockwave through world markets, so does this mean we should be worried about China? According to chief executive Tim Cook, Apple was wrong-footed by ‘the magnitude of the...

Is the company or the market to blame for ASOS profit warning?

Thursday 20 Dec 2018

Shares in retailers sold-off heavily on 17 December as online fashion retailer ASOS ( ASC:AIM ) issued a shock profit warning, cutting its annual sales growth and margin forecasts amid a fall in consumer confidence and a flurry of margin-crimping discounts. Sector sentiment had already been rocked...

Aviva plans radical move with general insurance proposition

Thursday 13 Dec 2018

An important development has occurred in the insurance sector which could have a major impact on the sector in the medium term. Aviva ( AV. ) has announced that it will launch a new subscription-based insurance product called AvivaPlus with several novel features. First the customer will be able to...