January 2017 Performance
Equity markets have enjoyed a steady start to 2017 and the MSCI World rallied 2.35% in January. The political climate remains unsettled with US President Donald Trump taking office and the lack of clarity surrounding the Brexit timeline. The Trump rally has lost some of its momentum, but the Dow Jones Industrial Average still managed to break the 20,000 points level and the S&P 500 gained 1.79%. The new “Leader of the Free World” has come under heavy criticism for his protectionist policies. Nevertheless, he appears resolute in the timely implementation of his campaign promises that ultimately swept him to victory. Prime Minister Theresa May has been scrutinised for her bridge-building visit to the White House and her hardline approach to Brexit. She confirmed that the UK will leave the European Union after triggering Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty and give up its unrestricted access to the single market. The UK economy continues to defy the Bank of England’s pessimistic forecasts. Fourth quarter GDP increased 0.6% and the IMF reported that the UK was the fastest growing G7 economy in 2016. The UK equity markets traded in narrow ranges as the large-cap FTSE 100 fell -0.61% and the mid-cap FTSE 250 gained 0.39%. Ten-year UK gilts sold-off 18 bps to 1.42%, following the publication of the December CPI figures that rose to 1.6%. Given the return of inflation, the next move in the Bank Rate is likely to be an increase, which will extend the bear market in bonds. Higher interest rates are supportive for sterling and it rallied 1.95% against the US dollar to close at 1.26. US politics and the Brexit negotiations will dominate the press headlines in the coming months. Investors need to look beyond the “White Noise” and remain focused on the positive fundamentals that are driving global equity valuations higher.
ACUMEN Conservative Portfolio
The ACUMEN Conservative Portfolio returned -0.08% in January and the IA Mixed Investment 20-60% Shares sector rose 0.30%. The portfolio has a rolling 1-year return of 16.57%.
ACUMEN Income Portfolio
The ACUMEN Income Portfolio returned -0.19% in January and the IA Mixed Investment 20-60% Shares sector rose 0.30%. The portfolio has a rolling 1-year return of 17.31%.
ACUMEN Progressive Portfolio
The ACUMEN Progressive Portfolio returned 0.60% in January and the IA Mixed Investment 40-85% Shares sector rose 0.62%. The portfolio has a rolling 1-year return of 18.10%.
ACUMEN Adventurous Portfolio
The ACUMEN Adventurous Portfolio returned 0.54% in January and the IA Flexible Investment sector rose 1.03%. The portfolio has a rolling 1-year return of 19.47%.
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 Asset Management Limited, Thomson Reuters and Lipper for Investment Management unless otherwise stated.