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Long-term diversification #investments

Some investments take a long time to come good and are much riskier than the FTSE 100 companies. We can limit risk by diversifying and limiting our exposure quantitatively. These investments often lose money, at least on paper in the short-term, but can give a good return in the long-term.

long-term investments

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Solo Oil : the jackpot #investments

Many investors make an investment in a small company and hope they make it big. I have high hopes that Solo Oil will make it big with its shares in oil discoveries both in Tanzania and in the UK.

Solo Oil investments

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Making money from panic #finance

It doesn’t matter what the panic is, a strike, a bread shortage or an oil glut. There will be people who will exaggerate the problem and so a belief will spread that things are worse than they really are. The speculators then make money buying up the commodity that is in short supply or taking advantage in some way. Has panic got worse? As far as the money markets and stock markets are concerned, I think it has and so there are now more opportunities for making money.

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A big pay squeeze coming? #finance

There have been lots of warnings this week of a pay squeeze coming that will affect the poorest in society most and maybe more benefit cuts too. The chancellor even hinted that the triple lock on pensions could be abolished.

pay squeeze

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Interest rates in post-truth Britain #finance

The latest buzz word to join those most-hated headline grabbing words that editors love is post-truth. We are now in an era of appeals to our emotions as the evidence is swept away by a tide of nationalism. We have had two world wars driven by nationalism. Do we really want another?

interest rates about to rise?

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America plays its trump card #investments

There have been many events since 2008 that have spooked the financial markets but  Brexit and Donald Trump winning the US presidential election must be the most nerve-jangling for investors. Clinton had plans that were seen as negative for the pharmaceutical industry but Trump also seems to be a threat to Obamacare that could also have a negative effect, as well.

trump card?

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Supply, demand and prices #finance

Basic economics tell us that supply and demand dictate prices. The current over-supply of oil has reduced the price to under $50 a barrel but is this rule always true and what drives demand? If everyone gets a pay rise, demand is increased but where does the money come from? All money comes from central banks, of course, and so it is the central banks that create demand by printing money.

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Free trade at any price? #Investments

Free Trade?

The trade agreement being negotiated between the EU and Canada, CETA, was effectively blocked by a Belgian regional government but yesterday a compromise was reached. The agreement runs to 1,600 pages and is a complex, comprehensive economic and trade agreement that demonstrates how difficult it will be for the UK to negotiate a trade agreement with the EU in the event of Brexit. Free trade with Europe will be by lengthy negotiation, if at all. Do we need free trade with Europe? Some controls on imports such as requiring goods to be of a standard that supports sustainability might be a good idea. Many goods imported into France need to have a 2-year warranty rather than the usual one year. Isn’t that a good thing?

free trade

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Interest rates and the markets #investments

Interest rates

I’m watching interest rates around the world. It seems the Federal Reserve will be the first to normalise interest rates. It could be as early as next month but many pundits are betting on December. That could be the trigger for other central banks to raise their rates too. It would certainly have an effect on the value of the US dollar as more money would be invested in the US as international investors look for better returns on their funds. That, in turn, would have a negative effect on other currencies including the GBP.

interest rates

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The pound crashed yet again! #finance

The pound

This week we seem to be seeing a change direction for the government. Teresa May, was by any standards impressive when she made her speech to the party conference. She did, however, praise the record of the Cameron government and still seems a little out of touch. The pound crashed this week down to 1.2454 this morning. She hasn’t got a vote of confidence from the market.

the pound

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Diversity rules, OK? #investments

Diversity

The stock market rallied a bit yesterday after the Federal Reserve decided to delay interest rate rises to later in the year. Uncertainty still worries investors and it seems this morning some dealers are taking profits and so the main market is down. I would be down too, but diversity rules for me and so I’m up as some of my AIM shares come good.

diversity rules

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Globalisation risks for investors #investments

Globalisation

Globalisation has to some extent brought us prosperity but it has also brought us cartels and monopolies. Some of these companies have grown so big through the spread of globalisation that they are now very difficult to challenge and so have a virtual monopoly. Facebook, for example, has little competition. There are alternatives in China like QQ but in the western world, Facebook has the power to dominate the market.

globalisation

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A strange coincidence #finance #investments

By a strange coincidence, my car insurance is due today and the premium has gone up 20%. This seems the norm this year across the industry. I have my insurance with the AA who have been upgraded by brokers Morgan Stanley this morning to ‘overweight’. The share price has shot up by 4.85% in early trading. Every cloud has a silver lining…

strange coincidence

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How to start in share dealing #investments

Broker

Share dealing is fraught with problems and it is something you have to learn by experience. First, you need a good stock broker and you will almost certainly use a nominee account. This means they hold the shares on your behalf. I think nominee accounts stink, they don’t give private shareholders enough rights or influence over the company that they collectively own.

share dealing

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Perceptions of investment risk #finance

Since the credit crunch of 2008 investors have demanded higher returns on the perceived risks associated with the stock market. Perceptions of investment risk changed in 2008 and made investors more risk averse and Brexit reinforced their fears of another meltdown. We nervously wait for article 50 to be triggered which is another storm warning that could devastate the market once again.

perceptions of investment risk

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Predicting the future #finance #investments

Investors are the experts when it comes to predicting the future but can still be taken by surprise by political events. Brexit wasn’t exactly a surprise but many investors hoped the remain side would win. We now have the triggering of article 50 to look forward to which could trash the markets yet again.

predicting the future

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Cooking up some savings #thrifty

You don’t have to do much cooking when we have summer weather, but here in the heart of England, the rain has returned. The forecast for the weekend is better and so the salad days may return. In Aldi this week the iceberg lettuce, spring onions, celery  and radishes are just 29p each so a healthy salad might be on the menu this weekend.

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QE boost #investments #finance

Yesterday the Bank of England announced a QE boost with another 60 billion of quantitative easing and a cut in the base rate to 0.5%. There will be no prizes for guessing who will benefit from this boost.  The stock market surged by 1.5% yesterday and the trend continues today. The base rate cut will see mortgages cheaper and so stoke the London housing bubble a little more while there is stifling of the supply side.

QE boost

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Unpredictable future #investments

The whole economic picture for the UK and maybe for the world is still uncertain. Despite the super-computers running economic models and expert economists making their predictions, the economic future looks even more unpredictable than ever. The future for the UK is even more unpredictable because of uncertainty caused by Brexit.

unpredictable future

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Brexit uncertainty lingers #finance

The stock market has recovered a little since the ‘Brexit’ vote but with Arm Holdings being taken over I have been wondering how much ‘investment’ is coming in from overseas as foreign companies take advantage of the reduced value of the pound sterling. Brexit uncertainty makes overseas investors nervous too, though.

Brexit uncertainty

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Pragmatism in finance #investments

Pragmatism:

An approach that evaluates theories or beliefs in terms of the success of their practical application.

Insanity:

Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

pragmatism in finance

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Market manipulation? #investments

We have seen interest rates manipulation in the recent past and banking products mis-sold. On the forums, there are now accusations of stock market manipulation. There is  a petition asking for regulation of market makers.

market manipulation

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Brexit aftershocks #finance

After the stock market was trashed last Friday we had the aftershocks that saw banks and house builders losing up to 30% of their market capitalisation. Then, the dead cat bounced, the market recovered a little this week. So why did it crash so spectacularly on Friday and what can we learn from it? We have to understand the role of market makers in all this. We need to understand the Brexit aftershocks.

brexit aftershocks

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