Economy

Low volatility does not necessarily mean less growth

Investors who have followed my reports over the years, would know that I like to use well-known sayings to either point out or describe a variety of terms or market movements. But there is one saying that regularly makes its appearance in the investment world: “High risk, high reward.” Without wanting to offend thrill seekers, […]

Economy

Mid-Caps – Is it time to go big?

With the Rugby World Cup (RWC) behind us, we can proudly say that we are the world champions. Not only did we win the final against England, we just about destroyed them in dominating fashion. What makes this achievement even greater, is the fact that in March last year (2018), there was absolutely no excitement […]

Economy

The S&P500 party is just getting started

We have all been invited to a function, party, wedding or braai that we just didn’t look forward to, only to be surprised with a very pleasant event. Before you knew it, you were socialising like pro, and by the time midnight struck, you were the one proudly showing off your best dance moves to […]

Economy

The road to success does not always run equally smoothly

It’s a scientific fact that no two people are exactly alike. A few years ago, my family and I took a road trip through the Klein Karoo. Aside from being one of the most breathtakingly beautiful places on earth, it is also known for some of the world’s most beautiful mountain ranges. We spent the […]

Economy

The relationship between JSE earnings and SA GDP Growth

We live in an era dominated by superheroes, and when I say this, I’m not referring to the real brave man climbing up the side of some building to rescue a child that’s hanging by a nail. No, I’m talking about comic book characters that usually find themselves on the big screen in a wonderfully […]

Economy

Don’t bet on last year’s star performers

Whether it’s Formula 1’s four wheels or the two wheels in MotoGP, I absolutely love motorsports. Many readers may point out, however, that motorsports have become boring in recent years, mainly because the previous week’s winners (usually Lewis Hamilton or Marc Márquez) typically end up winning the following week’s race as well. To date, between […]

Economy

Is there really value hiding somewhere in the South African market?

I have always found the human brain to be a fascinating thing. In school, we had a pupil that was extremely gullible. He would come to school 100% healthy, but from time to time, his friends would play a prank on him by telling him that he didn’t look healthy at all. Lo and behold, […]

Economy

There goes the rand… Yet Again

As South Africans, we have this amazing ability to come up with catchy terms for big events that take place in our country. But just as the USA is running out of female names for hurricanes, it seems that we will also be running out of terms to label local catastrophic events soon, especially when […]

Economy

Cobbler, stick to your last

A few years ago, my sister and her then fiancé, asked me to be master of ceremonies (MC) at their wedding. While he is Dutch and she had settled in Amsterdam many years ago, they decided to have their wedding in South Africa. Shortly before their wedding day, however, I got a call from my […]

Economy

Just how defensive are defensive stocks right now?

Defensive stocks are predominantly found in industries where companies are mainly focused on delivering cheaper products or services that consumers find hard or impossible to manage without. Typical examples of areas where defensive investments can be found include food manufacturers and retailers, medical care and the tobacco and alcohol industries. The fact that delivering these […]

Economy

Winners do not always go hand-in-hand

I’m sure that most people are familiar with the saying about something going hand in hand with something else. Let’s use a cycling team in the Tour de France (TdF) as an example. A team consisting of Peter Sagan and Mark Cavendish simply wouldn’t make sense, because their goals for this year’s TdF, and their […]

Economy

Is now the right time to sell your shares?

We find ourselves in the sixthmonth of 2019, a year that can definitely be described as a rollercoaster year. Just over a month ago investors were all excited to see the FTSE/JSE trading positive by 14.5% for this year (up to 23 April 2019) and there was a general feeling of optimism. Now the market […]

Economy

High unemployment figures make for a miserable country

In 1962, well-known American economist, Arthur Orkun, found that a 1% rise in unemployment figures had an approximate 2% adverse effect on the country’s GDP. He developed the Misery Index by adding the US unemployment rate to the inflation rate, the result of which should point out just how miserable the country is. The higher […]

Economy

How to avoid investment fraudsters

Nature never ceases to amaze me. A few years ago, during winter, our Border collie passed a little too close to our heater at home, and out of sheer curiosity about this heat-emitting wonder, walked away with a burnt snout. To this day, she avoids the heater by a few meters, even when it’s switched […]

Economy

Surprise earnings

I have found that it’s often the events that we look forward to the least, that turn out surprisingly well and that many events that we have looked forward to for a very long time, often tend to disappoint us. At the beginning of 2018, there were great expectations and hopes that our local stock […]

Economy

If you can measure it, you can manage it

Without numbers, terms such as “chances are” and “probably” would have no real meaning. Without chances and probability, the only way to approach risk would be through fate and destiny. Without numbers, risk would be based on nothing more than a hunch. We live in a world filled with numbers and calculations, whether its the […]

Economy

It will rain again – don’t try to predict, rather prepare

Important financial lessons learnt from the recent drought.   Last summer, Cape Town narrowly avoided a ‘Day Zero’ scenario. Had Day Zero manifested, Cape Town would have faced one of the biggest humanitarian crises in our history. The prospects of taps running dry (together with the measures taken), can teach us a number of important […]

Economy

Will the rand treat us to a repeat of its end-of-2017 performance?

They say that a week these days, can be a long time when it comes to our local market. So much can happen in such a short period of time, that just as you think that the “match” is going to end in total defeat, someone scores a six with the last ball of the […]