PSG Asset Management was named as one of the top five asset management companies in South Africa by the latest independent and comprehensive PlexCrown Unit Trust Survey for a solid track record across asset classes. The PlexCrown Survey ranks asset management companies that have a rated fund with at least a five-year track record within [...]
By: Simon Hudson-Peacock: Equity research analyst at Momentum Asset Management On Monday, 15 April 2013, ...
By André Roux, co-head of Emerging Markets Fixed Income, Investec Asset Management There is little ...
By Nico Coetzee, Executive: Business Development at PPS Investments When deciding how to invest accumulated ...
By Ursula Maritz, Chief Investment Officer of Southern Charter One of the big surprises in ...
By Peter Atkinson, National Technical Portfolio Manager at the Financial Intermediaries Association of Southern Africa ...
- Q: How did you get involved in financial services - was it always something you wanted to do?
- A: Originally I wanted to be an actuary and designed my studies around subjects that would prepare me best for the qualifying exams. This meant that I focused on mathematics and economics, with an interest in computer science. which really gave me a good foundation to enter the financial services industry. After completing a couple of internships, I realised that I had a passion for asset management and financial analysis specifically. I started working for a brokerage firm doing client portfolio admin, moved into a consulting role for an asset manager and ultimately joined the Marriott investment team.
- Q: You have the wonderful word “mathematics” in your degree - how do we get more people to appreciate the importance of this subject and how does it help you in life and business - what do we miss when we don't have mathematics as part of our studies?
- A: I love numbers. They are the one thing makes absolute sense to me. 1+1 = 2, no matter what. The beauty of mathematics for me is that you have to think logically. The more logical one’s decisions are, the more I think you tend to make the correct decision. While this doesn’t always hold true, as things aren’t always black and white (my wife tends to point these circumstances out to me), in general it certainly helps to follow some sort of logic. Mathematics has helped me with that. For this reason I think most businesses are looking for employees with some basic mathematical skill which is essential for working in today’s world. Mathematics is a language and if we excluded it from our studies we would not have the ability to understand or to describe much of the world around us. We use mathematics in everything we do, from calculating how fast we are driving, to how much we can afford to spend and even to monitor how much petrol is in our car. I think the world would be lost without the ability to count, compare, understand or describe things using numbers.
- Q: Inflation - are we bad at forecasting inflation accurately or do we follow the wrong formulas and data - do you see inflation changing much in the next few years?
- A: Personally, I feel that analysts get longer-term inflation right more often than wrong, but the world we live in needs to know what the inflation rate is going to be over the next 12 months. The variables that change the prices of goods and services in an economy are extremely difficult to predict, especially in South Africa. The price of petrol, grain, sugar and many other products consumers use on a daily basis, depends on what the price of those goods are on world markets and the current exchange rate. As an example not many analysts would have accurately predicted that the Rand-US Dollar (USDZAR) exchange rate would have depreciated from R7.76 at the end of April 2012 to around R9.00 currently. This makes the job of an analyst so much more difficult and is why a longer-term inflation number seems to be easier to forecast. Regarding my expectation for inflation in the years ahead, it seems that world economies are printing more and more money and keeping bond yields lower for longer in an attempt to stimulate economic growth. With this surplus of money and low yields, the risk is for higher global inflation in the years ahead.
- Q: What has been your best and worst investment decision?
- A: I am still young and the only significant investment I have made is to buy a house. I purchased the worst house in a nice area and am hoping that after our renovations are complete that this will be one of my better investment decisions. My worst investment was buying a really expensive treadmill as it isn’t being used for running but rather for hanging up clothes.
Do you know the story of the pencil in space? I have heard it twice in the last week and it is a great story. It goes like this – the Americans were going into space and needed a pen that wrote – and they spent USD65m developing this pen. The Russians just used a [...]
The winter chill has definitely set in and so too unfortunately has the traditional bouts of colds and flu and respiratory complications which can cause havoc during the winter months. Peter Jordan, Principal Officer of Fedhealth says that there are numerous ways that “healthy can be made easy” during this change of season. Anti-oxidants are [...]
The decision to move brokers is never an easy one and this decision is most often prompted by poor claims service, inadequate advice, lack of innovation or general service lethargy. It is seldom based on a broker’s inability to secure competitive terms in the market and yet this is often used as a basis for [...]
The changing of the leaves from green to brown and the shortening of days indicate that Winter is well on its way. Winter brings cold weather and keeps us inside, where indoor triggers such as dust mites, pet allergens, smoke and viruses can worsen asthma symptoms. In addition, the cold dry air may cause airways [...]
On 17 May, World Hypertension Day, worldwide the spotlight once again falls on the silent killer: high blood pressure and hypertension, an affliction which affects one out of every four South African adults and may ultimately result in death. “As high dietary salt intake is estimated to cause about a third of all hypertension cases [...]
Business leaders are calling for government to prioritise initiatives that help foster a skilled workforce, as more than half of CEOs around the world say a lack of key skills is hampering their growth prospects. The skills shortage is particularly acute in fast-growing markets such as Africa (where 82% of CEOs says availability is a [...]
By David Crosoer, Executive: Research and Investments, PPS Investments The South African Reserve Bank (SARB) expects CPI inflation to average 6.3% in the third quarter of 2013, before returning into the targeted 3% – 6% band in the fourth quarter. In the previous two inflation cycles (see chart below), the SARB started to increase interest [...]
By Jeremy Gardiner, director, Investec Asset Management First quarter unit trust flows in South Africa illustrate a dramatic slowdown in offshore investment. This is probably driven by the fact that investors feel they have ‘missed the boat’ in terms of offshore diversification given the rand’s recent decline. This slowdown in offshore flows is in marked [...]
While over 60 per cent of global investors believe their country’s stock market will be up in 2013, risk continues to be a concern. In addition, two-thirds (66 per cent) of investors now expect the best equity and fixed income opportunities will be found outside their home market this year (2013), reflecting growing optimism for [...]
By Felix Ubogu, Head: Asset Consulting at Liberty Corporate Increasing regulation in the financial services industry, particularly retirement reform proposals, has highlighted the importance of the role that a board of trustees plays. Every board should have a clear investment philosophy – a set of core beliefs and principles – about investment markets and investor [...]
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Newsletter 23 May 2013: Sovereign Wealth Funds
In today’s newsletter we take a look at Sovereign Wealth Funds – how much is [...]
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