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Hyperinflation and me
"I remember my father reporting this note with 11 zeros was worth 'roughly one cabbage' at the time of issue."
MMT on the march?
The response to this economic crisis has moved away from the old monetary regime to one where fiscal policy has become more important.
A vaccine: to v or not to v? That is the question
September 2020: The superforecasters of the Good Judgement Project believe there is a 93% probability we will have an FDA-approved vaccine in a year, and enough of it to inoculate 25m people in the US. This is up from just 20% in the dark days of April.
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Ruffer Radio: Gold Matters
September 2020: John Wong, co-manager of the LF Ruffer Gold Fund, and Jenny Renton, Investment Director and co-manager of the Charity Assets Trust, assess the case for gold and share their thoughts on its role in investors’ portfolios.
Buy and hold
Buy good companies. And own them forever. As investment approaches go, it is seductively simple. In a financial world that often looks confused, and in places absurd, buying and holding a portfolio of high-quality companies has evident appeal.
Time to value Value
August 2020: The US internet shares have been roaring ahead, particularly in recent months. The coronavirus crisis has accelerated the shift toward online retail and smart communications, and these are the most obvious winners. It has been a giddy ride.
The Barber Boom
The story of an economic gear shift which sent post-war Britain careering around country lanes, before skidding on an oil slick and being sent ditchward. There it was left, engine smoking, entangled in the brambles of inflation. It wasn’t until 1980 that road-side recovery eventually arrived in the shape of Paul Volcker and his inflation curbing toolkit.
Would a stock, by any other name, rise just as high?
Traditional finance theory tells us that markets are rational. Investors incorporate all public and private information when making their investment decisions. This school of thought is grappling with the field of behavioural finance, which asserts that human psychology and biases also act in an irrational way to influence these same investment decisions.
Blowing up the Box
Across many developed economies, the prevailing economic and financial policy framework – what we’ll call the Box – is failing to deliver for much of the adult population. The mood is ripe for a policy revolution, a new monetary settlement. When the Box is blown up, inflation objectives will lose their privileged position. Fiscal orthodoxy will be abandoned. This will demolish the pillars on which so many investment strategies are built.
Scrabbling around for income
July 2020: Coronavirus shutdowns have triggered the worst recession since the Great Depression. Like a depth charge dropped against a submarine, we’ve felt the shockwave but have yet to see how much debris floats to the surface. Ratings agencies suggest the damage is serious and that default rates will soar.
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