December 2016 Performance
The “Trump Rally” has confounded the bearish predictions contrived by many of the same financial market experts that had precipitately forecasted a sharp slowdown in the UK following the Brexit vote. There has been no mass exodus away from risk-assets. In fact, just the opposite has occurred. Investors have taken a more optimistic view and large-cap equity markets in the US and UK have risen to all-time highs. The outlook for growth remains positive and global GDP has returned to the long-term trend line of 4%. The recovery is likely to be sustainable given that the Chinese economy is growing at an annual rate of 6.70% and the President-elect plans to invest in large-scale infrastructure projects. In December, the MSCI World rose 2.29% and the FTSE 100 gained 5.29% to close the year up 14.43%. The Nikkei 225 climbed 4.40% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 3.34% to finish at the highest level in its 120-year history. The transition to a higher rate environment has begun as the US Federal Reserve raised interest rates by 25 bps and adopted a more hawkish stance. The Bank of England left rates unchanged and reiterated its concern that inflation is set to rise above the target range of 2%. A short covering rally in the US treasury and UK gilt markets supported bond prices and ten-year rates closed at 2.43% and 1.24% respectively. The upward trend for the US dollar continues unabated. It appreciated 2.12% versus the Japanese yen and 1.34% against sterling. Commodity prices increased and the GSCI rose 4.60% with much of the gains coming from the energy spectrum. Light crude oil climbed 8.66% and natural gas surged 11.10% following OPEC’s agreement to restrict output. Looking ahead, further rotation out of bonds and into global equities will be the dominant investment theme in 2017 as inflation returns with a vengeance.
ACUMEN Conservative Portfolio
The ACUMEN Conservative Portfolio returned 1.70% in December and the IA Mixed Investment 20-60% Shares sector rose 2.17%. The portfolio has returned 15.78% year to date and 20.57% since inception on 1st October 2014.
ACUMEN Income Portfolio
The ACUMEN Income Portfolio returned 2.03% in December and the IA Mixed Investment 20-60% Shares sector rose 2.17%. The portfolio has returned 17.53% since inception on 25th February 2016.
ACUMEN Progressive Portfolio
The ACUMEN Progressive Portfolio returned 2.30% in December and the IA Mixed Investment 40-85% Shares sector rose 2.58%. The portfolio has returned 12.59% year to date and 19.35% since inception on 9th October 2014.
ACUMEN Adventurous Portfolio
The ACUMEN Adventurous Portfolio returned 2.21% in December and the IA Flexible Investment sector rose 2.53%. The portfolio has returned 18.83% since inception on 25th February 2016.
The value of an investment in the Protection Portfolios, ACUMEN Portfolios or Tavistock PROFILES may fall as well as rise. Past performance should not be seen as an indication of future performance. Source of data: Tavistock Wealth Limited, Thomson Reuters and Lipper for Investment Management unless otherwise stated.