Education
Tom Stevenson

Were we really so credulous? Did we really know so little about foreign food? 62 years ago today, Panorama aired one of the great April Fool’s jokes. The report showed farmers apparently picking spaghetti from trees, and laying it out to dry. It allegedly fooled even the BBC’s director general... Show More

Tom Stevenson

Donald Rumsfeld famously called them ‘known-unknowns’ - things we sense are important but don’t fully understand and cannot predict. Bob Dylan put it well, too, when he sneered ‘there’s something going on here, but you don’t know what it is, do you, Mr Jones’. Both point to the investor’s greatest... Show More

Tom Stevenson

I’m sure I wasn’t the only person flattening cardboard after Christmas and wondering who makes this now ubiquitous packaging. There was hardly a day in the run-up to the holidays when I wasn’t signing for a brown box too big for what was packed inside. What a great business, I... Show More

Tom Stevenson

I’m beginning to think that my holidays are turning into a reliable market indicator. Short-haul, good; long-haul, reach for your hard hat. Three years ago, when we visited Japan, the market took a dim view of renminbi weakness and shares fell for another six months until bottoming in early 2016.... Show More

Tom Stevenson

When, a couple of years ago, Saudi Arabia was twisting the arms of Russia and 22 other oil producing countries to stem the flow of crude, the oil price was already off its low of less than $30 a barrel. But at around $50 in late 2016, it still represented... Show More

Tom Stevenson

A couple of weeks ago, I suggested that 2018 would be the year in which we waved goodbye to Goldilocks. By that, I meant that the unusually favourable conditions investors enjoyed in 2017 - solid growth, lower for longer interest rates, subdued inflation and a lack of volatility - could... Show More

Tom Stevenson

Every three months I knock on my colleagues’ doors and ask them what they’re thinking about the markets. It’s interesting to hear what’s keeping them up at night. Even more interesting is what they are worried about. What moves a market is, by definition, not what investors have already priced... Show More

Tom Stevenson

Most of the time investors don’t need to think too much about market timing or asset allocation. The long-term trajectory of financial markets is up and the only sensible thing to do is to be fully invested and allow the odds to work in your favour. As we enter 2018,... Show More

Tom Stevenson

Does politics matter to investors? Read any market report and the answer might seem obvious. Market movements are often explained as reactions to an unfolding political story - Brexit, Catalonia, North Korea, Trump, European elections. All of these have at times over the past 18 months seemed to be key... Show More

Tom Stevenson

This is a good week to be thinking about risk. A string of natural disasters in the Americas and a potential man-made catastrophe in Asia coincide with the anniversaries of two events that caught us napping in years past. None of us will forget this day 16 years ago when... Show More

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