Tag Archives: UK

Markit: emerging markets still “downbeat” about future

By Andrei Skvarsky.

Global financial information provider Markit says a survey it made last month suggests emerging markets remain “downbeat” about the future.


“Improving confidence and post-crisis high capex and hiring intentions in the developed world contrast markedly with ongoing downbeat expectations for the year ahead across the emerging markets,” the London-headquartered company said in a report on February’s Global Business Outlook Survey, the latest of polls the firm takes three times a year at four-month intervals.

The surveys are based on responses from 11,000 companies across the world.

“In all cases, emerging market companies are on average far less optimistic about future business activity growth, capex and hiring than they were even at the height of the financial crisis in 2009, when optimism had shown surprising resilience,” the report said.

Brazil appeared to be the most upbeat of the BRICs, though less so than during the previous survey. Markit argued that the 2014 soccer World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics, which the South American country is going to host, partially explained its relative optimism.

“Some improvement was seen in China”, while Russia and India showed “new all-time lows”, the company said.

The report does not mention the Ukraine crisis. The upheaval in Kyiv was coming to a head just a couple of days before the poll was completed, while the turmoil in Crimea came after that.

At the same time, business expectations in the United States, Britain and the eurozone were quite high, and there were signs of improvement in Japan, according to the findings of the survey.

“Recoveries in the US, eurozone, UK and Japan are looking increasingly sustainable, with companies set to boost their capital spending and hiring at the fastest rates since the financial crisis alongside the brighter outlook,” the Markit report quoted the firm’s chief economist, Chris Williamson, as saying.

Overall, the poll suggested global business optimism had reached a “two-year high,” the report said.

The countries covered by the Global Business Outlook surveys are the United States, Japan, Germany, Britain, France, Italy, Spain, Ireland, Austria, the Netherlands, Greece, the Czech Republic, Poland, Brazil, Russia, India and China. Questioning is done through phone calls, faxing, websites or email, with respondents allowed to select their interview mechanism.

RenCap hires banker from Goldman Sachs to run London trading

By Andrei Skvarsky.

Renaissance Capital, a Russian emerging- and frontier-markets investment bank, has hired David George from Goldman Sachs as head of trading in London.


George will be based in London in his new job, which he takes in March, and report to RenCap’s global head of equities, Ben Samuels.

His duties will include support for the Moscow-headquartered firm’s efforts to grow its business in Turkey, Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa, the bank said in a statement.

George has spent the past seven years at Goldman Sachs, where his last role was chief operational officer of the emerging markets equity business. Previously he worked at Merrill for 13 years, heading the emerging markets trading desk for the last five years.

Other senior hires made by RenCap in the past few months are Robert Lamprecht, head of African sales, Amr Aboushaban, vice-president in the equities sales team, Harry Stanford, director in equity sales trading in London, and Ozlem Turgay, an equity salesman in Istanbul.

Coutts: luxuries up 77% in value since 2005, outdoing shares

By Andrei Skvarsky.

Royal Bank of Scotland-owned lender Coutts argues that a vintage car, posh apartment or sumptuous watch that you would have bought in 2005 might bring you twice as much as you paid for it, or even more, if you sold it today.


Classic cars have rocketed 257%, classic watches 176% and “billionaire” property 100% over this period, according to the Coutts Index, which purports to provide the global benchmark for monitoring the value of “passion assets” held by high- and ultra-high-net-worth individuals.

The index has risen 77% since the start of 2005 and went up 2.8% during the first six months of 2013.

This is more than investment in company shares would normally have yielded since 2005.

The asset categories covered by the index include paintings, sculptures, traditional Chinese art, fine wines, postage stamps, rugs, carpets, and rare musical instruments.

Coutts, which was set up in 1692 and is one of the world’s oldest banks, evolved the index jointly with Fathom Consulting. Both firms are based in London.

Royal Bank of Scotland subsidiary says BRIC obsolete term

By Andrei Skvarsky.

Coutts, a lender owned by Royal Bank of Scotland, argues that the 13-year-old BRIC term is obsolete.


The economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China are much too different in size and performance to justify seeing the four nations as a distinctive group. Moreover, there is a bunch of other emerging markets that are likely to catch up soon with China and India, apparently BRIC’s best-performing nations, according to Coutts’s Today & Tomorrow investment outlook for 2014.

In the 10 years from 2008 to 2018, China’s contribution to global economic growth is expected to increase to almost 18% from 11% and India’s to rise to 6.3% from 4.8%, while the contributions of Russia and Brazil would drop, Coutts says.

Aside from China and India, the markets that are set to make the greatest contribution to world growth are Indonesia, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, Iraq, the Philippines, Qatar, Peru, Vietnam, Turkey, Malaysia and Ethiopia, the London-headquartered bank says.

The term BRIC was coined by Jim O’Neill at Goldman Sachs in 2001 to highlight the economic growth of Brazil, Russia, India and China, which rivalled that of G7 countries.

The BRIC concept was taken up by politicians, with the four countries forming a loose political alliance. Russia hosted the first BRIC summit in June 2009. In 2010, South Africa, whose 2013 GDP was not much bigger than that of Nigeria or Malaysia and smaller than, say, that of Indonesia, joined the bloc, which was renamed BRICS.

BRIC and later BRICS have altogether had five summits, the latest one in Durban, South Africa, in March last year.

The term BRIC was coined by by Jim O’Neill at Goldman Sachs 13 years ago to highlight the economic growth of Brazil, Russia, India and China, rivalling that of G7 countries.

In 2014 – the big career challenge is to sell our skills


In 2013, the number of companies involved in corporate recruitment expanded again, for better or for worse.  In 2014 there will be type of chaos in the market, which will effect how real people achieve career-defining steps and changes.

Executive recruiters; in-house recruiters; HR directors; outsourcers; procurement teams; Linked-in junkies, employer brand managers; company referral schemes; and renegade managers each contribute to their bit to the chaotic recruitment landscape. In 2014, everyone will protect their patch and want their due.

Many factors will make it harder for good recruiters to really help you  

1.  Executive Recruiters are under lots of pressure to only find and charge for, near-perfect candidates.  Because employers now have a plethora of means to find ‘nearly right’ candidates themselves and many are prepared to put in time to dodge big fees, you may need to have done 90% of a job before, before an employer is happy to pay a recruiter for the introduction.

2.  Most people making a big career move represent a degree of risk to employers. Whilst some good employers do regularly take risks to hire talent above a matching CV, few want or need to pay thousands for the privilege.

3.  The economy in 2014 should be brighter than for many years. As a result the senior recruitment market will get more competitive and employers will want to watch their recruitment spending.

If you genuinely want a big step upwards or change of career path, you need to de-risk yourself. Which decoded, means free, free at least from a recruiters big fee.

Thankfully, the best Executive Recruiters present candidates to a client in a way that shows a good commercial rationale and address risks, they remain a FS professionals ally.  Also some foresighted companies deliberately seek talent in left-of-field places, but both are now exceptions to the market rule.

How your tactics should change in 2014

Be more optimistic.

A chaotic market means practically anyone, whether in-house or independent, charming or nauseating could possibly present you with a real career-change opportunity- there is no telling what quarter it will come from.  If you pride yourself on shutting-down cold callers with a volley of harsh words– it could have a price. Particularly listen-out for calls from in-house recruitment teams because whilst their pitch style could be different to true headhunters, they could still give you access to great chances.

 Be clearer about your value.

Hiring processes, particularly at their outset, place undue weight on your ability to talk with comfort about your professional skills and potential.  Without an independent recruiter to ‘sell’ you, the onus is on you.  Practising that small skill could make all the difference in the chaos of the 2014 career market.

olivier-vidalOlivier Vidal is MD of Go.Show.Do

At Go.Show.Do we know that being great at your job doesn’t mean selling yourself is easy.

We coach ambitious professionals to tell their story to employers – online, on paper and at interviews.

FxPro: US dollar, euro, sterling to get stronger, yen to weaken

By Andrei Skvarsky.

FxPro, a global forex broker, predicts that the world forex market will be characterised by greater volatility and shorter trends in 2014, with the US dollar, euro and sterling getting somewhat stronger and the yen further weakening.


The dollar will show “conditional” strength, “which means that we are not heading for a secular dollar bull market as the Fed starts tapering”, the London-headquartered brokerage said in a study.

“The euro will continue to surprise to the upside in the early part of the year, supported by current account dynamics, declining liquidity and low inflation, putting a break above 1.40 on EURUSD in sight,” it said.

Sterling is expected to be buoyant early on, but the post-crisis recovery dynamics based on cuts in real wages and savings “are not yet conducive towards a sustained recovery”, FxPro said. “The yen will continue to weaken, but to nothing like the degree that was seen in the early part of 2013.”

The Australian dollar will “suffer” as Australia’s central bank is likely to reduce rates and the economy would be re-balanced, FxPro forecasts.

RenCap hires bankers from Alfa Bank, Barclays for senior equities roles

By Andrei Skvarsky.

Russia’s Renaissance Capital has made two senior hires for directorships in its equities team.

Ilya Lobanov, who joins from Russia’s Alfa Bank, will work in the equity sales team in Moscow and Harry Stanford, who arrives from Barclays Capital, in the London-based equity sales unit, RenCap said in a statement.

Lobanov takes up his position on September 2 and Stanford in mid-November.

Lobanov was head of sales at Alfa Bank and had jobs with Goldman Sachs and UralSib earlier on. He will report to head of Russia and CIS equities Evgueni Konovalenko.

Stanford has been overseeing sales trading for Europe, the Middle East and Africa for the past four years while at Barclays. Previously, he had spent nine years at JP Morgan. In his RenCap position he will report to Christian Lantos, global head of sales trading.