What a difference a quarter makes; the last edition of Prospects was published following an all time high for the FTSE 100 in May; but since then the market has pulled back to the current level of around 6200, thanks to a low oil price and a massive devaluation in the Chinese stockmarkets.
Both of these themes are covered in this edition of Prospects, with commentary on the oil price by Tim Guinness one of the UK’s foremost investment management experts on energy, in which he promotes a couple of scenarios for the future of the oil industry.
The current market volatility, triggered by events in China, is explored in detail by Jeremy Warner, a renowned business and economic commentator and dovetails neatly with a macro-economic view from Brian Tora in his regular economic article.
Closer to home we look at how the budget takes the wind out of the opposition’s sails and sets the Chancellor on a course for taking over the reins at the end of this Parliament. The finer points of the budget, specifically how the changes in taxation on dividends might affect investors is covered in our regular independent feature.
John Royden, in his technical analysis suggests that the mixed messages from the markets could mean the situation would remain unchanged for the foreseeable future. With this and the regular commentary on four equity prospects and a summary of a few of the companies we’ve met during the quarter, we hope the investment insight that continues to drive the editorial continues to interest our regular readers.
Even closer to home for us is the article on page 22 where we publish for the first time the results of our client survey. Following a response rate far exceeding our expectations we were delighted to learn that our clients generally hold their relationship with their investment managers in very high regard, with 97% of participants expressing trust and confidence in their manager and 98% stating we have met or exceeded their investment expectations.
The feedback, which was gathered for us by a specialist research consultant, will be invaluable as we endeavour to keep our investment services relevant for our clients’ needs today and in the future. We do, however acknowledge that these findings do not represent all our clients’ views and therefore I encourage ongoing feedback outside of this formal process – I look forward to hearing from more of you in due course.
We are of course delighted to achieve such a high level of satisfaction from our clients and our challenge now will be to better these results by continuing to improve on the quality of client service. Forgive us for trumpeting these results, but whilst the markets are gloomy, it is a bonus to have something to celebrate.
Jon Berkeley/Debut Art
Jon Berkeley is a renowned illustrator who regularly contributes to publications such as The Economist.
Published by JM Finn & Co on 12th September 2015
Image credits: Shutterstock and Getty images (Photographer, Carl Court: page 4–5)