Improving Smart Beta strategies

By Roger McIntosh Smart beta investing, or rules-driven active investing, has gained widespread popularity and usage, particularly amongst investors looking for alternatives to high cost managers.  Almost 50% of institutions surveyed by Russell Indexes with assets over USD 1Billion are looking to i...
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How much risk is there in my passive strategy?

By Robert Swift Passive investment strategies, where investors simply invest in a fund that tracks a standard index like the S&P/ASX 200, have become increasingly popular both with institutions and private investors. The reasons are clear – they are cheaper than most active strategies, people ...
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Macy’s – a real target for acquisition?

By Karl Hunt, Portfolio Manager Macy’s, the US department store retailer, is a relatively recent purchase for the High Conviction Strategy.  Traditional bricks and mortar retailers have found it tough going against big online retailers like Amazon. As a result, Macy’s valuation has been...
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Trump so far and is 2017 going to be nasty?

By Robert Swift 2016 was a surprisingly decent year for investors in risk assets. Despite signs of unrest at the status quo as evidenced by the Brexit vote, Donald Trump’s victory and the rise of ‘populism’ in Europe, equity markets appear to be sanguine at the prospect of wholesale political ...
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Takeover Targets

By Karl Hunt, Portfolio Manager When a company makes a bid to buy another company there is most often a significant premium paid. To own shares in a company targeted for takeover can be very beneficial to your wealth since the share price will often rise higher than the initial bid in the expectatio...
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Just Intime for Macy’s and United Health

Even though it is early in 2017 there were two significant transactions in capital markets yesterday. Significant for our portfolio at least. United Health, (UNH) which we own, has acquired Surgical Health Care Affiliates (SCAI) for about US$2.3bn which is actually a small acquisition for a company ...
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Macy’s: Retail or Real Estate investment?

It hasn’t been an easy time to be a USA retailer, especially a big box, or department store, retailer. Aging demography, declining store traffic, poor wage growth, and inexorable and crushing competition from internet based companies have put business models and share prices under pressure. See th...
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