This year has started off on a positive note, with vaccination programmes making rapid progress and keeping investors optimistic about the prospects for the global economic recovery. While bond markets experienced some volatility during the first quarter, the situation stabilised towards the end of the period.
The US is about to turn on the spending taps once again to combat the effects of the pandemic. This time it coincides with the reopening, so expectations for GDP growth are soaring – taking yields with them.
After a busy start to the year there’s still a lot of uncertainty swirling around in markets. But economies tend to bounce back hard after sombre periods, and hope remains that our eventual return to ‘normal’ will be no different.
Flowers, hopes and yields are rising as spring approaches. Still, the UK government is only very cautiously reopening as vaccinations continue apace.
It looks like we’ll all be staying in this Valentine’s Day. But Multi-Asset Fund Manager Will McIntosh-Whyte is looking forward to some quality time away from the screens.
The prospect of widespread inoculation is like a shaft of light in the darkness of a very long year. But just how much of the world will that light touch?
Financial markets have been on a rollercoaster over the past year. There was a sharp drop in March as countries locked down and then a swift upswing followed, led by technology shares. Even unloved companies, particularly banks and energy firms, have rebounded lately, thanks to good news about vaccines.
A free trade agreement with the EU avoids damaging tariffs, but other barriers remain.
We close a difficult year with a sense of relief, and the tools to deal with the challenges ahead.