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Posts from the ‘Investment’ Category

Energy from Waste or Wasted Energy as UK Contractor Interserve Has Found to Its Cost.

I have a holding in Interserve a UK based support services and building contractor. It was until recently one of my larger holdings. From the 2009 financial crisis share price lows of sub 200 pence per share it climbed to peak at over 700 pence per share in early 2014 and has since retreated again to circa. 240 pence per share at the time of writing. Read more

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2016: Goodbye to All That Nonsense and Hello to 2017

I’m looking forward to seeing the back of 2016.

However it’s not particularly as an investor that I’ll be glad to see the start of 2017 but as a voter. I have voted 5 times since 2014 in elections for EU, UK and Scottish parliaments, 1 Scottish referendum and in June 2016 the Brexit referendum. It has been the latter that has seemed to matter the most and it has caused all the political upset although markets have been benign about the result so far except with currency markets against Sterling. Unfortunately that does matter as prices are rising and inflation will creep back in to the UK RPI figures as 2017 progresses.
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In the summertime when the FTSE 100 is fine, it can stretch right up and touch the sky…

The performance of the FTSE 100 share index appears to be fine so far after the UK’s Brexit vote, to paraphrase Mungo Jerry’s 1970 hit ,” In the summertime,” before the UK joined the EU, with global investors seeing US and other major indices rise too.
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Building a Wall to Stop Immigrants is the Last Piece of Infrastructure the USA Needs.

Republican Presidential Nominee apparent for the 2016 election (unless the Republicans can depose him at their convention) Billionaire property tycoon Donald Trump as part of his electioneering bravado has promised to construct a wall along the Mexican border to stop illegal immigrants from entering the US.
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Floods, Brexit and Migration with Weak Economic Growth and Tumbling Markets Makes 2016 A Tough Year Already.

There may have been a brief stock market rally late in 2015 and any expressed wishes for its continuance have been dashed as 2016 so far has been a tough one for many people and not just investors. Here in the UK floods have battered the country especially in Yorkshire, Cumbria and Scotland.
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2016: What’s Coming – the Good, the Bad or Mediocrity.

Another year starting so what’s in store for investors and markets?

In 2015 the GDP of the US economy grew at 2.4%, the UK did 2.5% and the EU managed 1.5% with all its currency and migrant upheavals (GS, 2015). China slowed down yet still reported 6.9% causing investors or speculators a heap of disappointment or margin call troubles depending on what figures one believes. India performed better at 7.4% and seems to have the confidence of pundits for an improvement in 2016 to 7.8% (GS, 2015). Let’s hope so, as India the world’s largest democracy, has disappointed before and there’s still plenty of debt and cronyism in its large institutions.
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Better to Be an Investor or a Speculator in Volatile Markets and Now with Marching Migrants?

During the spring of 2015 major equity market indices such as the S&P500 and the FTSE100 made record highs and most equity investors had a reasonable start to the year. However over the course of the summer, especially since August, these same indices along with share valuations have tumbled sharply. Widely discussed by politicians, economists and pundits is how it will effect or portray the true state of the economy now and in the coming months.
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Down and Up the Markets Go, Eurozone Sucks and Middle East Blows

Where are we headed is the question?

Will oil be the issue of 2015 or Eurozone deflation?

There’s been some volatility in recent months for financial markets were the VIX index, referred to as the fear index for markets, showed larger peaks appearing as investor concerns rose over issues like the ending of QE in the US, weak Eurozone demand or Russian actions over the Ukraine and more over.
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Peace, Hope and Progress versus Strife, Despair and Calamity: Any Predictions How These Will Turn Out?

In June 2014, I attended the 105th AGM of the Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust PLC (SMT), a fund of nearly £3 Billion of assets spread around the world with a total return objective. It’s managed by Baillie Gifford (BG) here in Edinburgh. As a small shareholder it’s useful to meet who governs and directs one’s portfolio from time to time and I would recommend attending such events on occasions, being an active shareholder is something a private investor should enjoy and not just for the coffee and sandwiches. I happened to know one of the directors as he’s from where I grew up and another Professor John Kay is a regular columnist and worthwhile read in the Financial Times. The board are usually available after an AGM to pose a couple of questions over those cups of coffee I mentioned.
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3D printing the next big thing: It’s exciting but investors should watch, wait and be choosy.

Increasingly Additive Manufacturing or 3D printing has become a hot news feature in the scientific or technical press and television news proclaiming revolutionary techniques to create products as diverse as jewellery, curvy concrete walls or car dashboards and even human spare parts. Pioneering medical applications include replacement jawbones and ears using powdered titanium or actual human tissue. The technology commonly uses resins, plastic pellets or powered metals or liquids to print a product using a specially adapted printer applying layer by layer the material through a nozzle or fusing by heat from a laser with a design created by CAD 3D software transferred to the printing device. The technology has been around for more than 20 years already and has been used by engineering companies such as GKN or Rolls Royce for parts in aeroplanes and automobiles. The internet was similarly available to academics and researchers before the worldwide web transformed its use. Read more

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