1. FROM THE EDITOR
I am Gianluigi Montagner, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Framont & Partners Management Ltd.(‘Framont’) Framont is a new Asset Management Company, incorporated in Malta and licensed to provide investment services in Malta by the Malta Financial Services Authority’. Our main investment services are Portfolio Management, Advisory, Management of UCITS and Alternative Investment Funds.
I am pleased to provide you with the first issue of Framont and Partners’ Newsletter.
In such Newsletter, the reader will be provided with information on the current markets and trends.
2. OUR PORTFOLIO MANAGERS
Being a financial professional who has been working for over twenty years in the private banking sector, Mr. Montagner boasts a deep experience at several Italian banks like Intesa and Unicredit, where he acted as Private Banker, Wealth manager for the unit and Responsible for financial products, supporting High Net Worth Individuals in their asset allocation. He gained then responsibilities with an Italian SIM (2009) where he has been Member of the Investment Committee. In 2012 Mr. Montagner joined a Maltese Asset Management Company, becoming CEO of the Italian branch and being Member of the Board OF Directors and the Investment Committee. In 2015 he has been appointed as CEO, Portfolio Manager, Member of the Investment Committee and Advisory Committee at Framont & Partners Management Ltd.
Graduated in 2003 from the Catholic University of the Sacred Earth (Milan) majoring in Political Economics (minor Economic Theory) with a final dissertation on International Economics. He started his career on the Structured Finance desk of Deutsche Bank in Milan and then moved to London for The Bank of New York. In 2008, Mr. Rusconi was appointed Portfolio Manager for a boutique Asset Management firm in Milan, managing Discretionary Mandates with Multi-Asset and Derivatives strategies. In 2014, moved to Sofia SGR S.p.a. (Milan) as a Portfolio Manager for the Private Investment Advisory office. From July 2015, Mr. Rusconi moved to Malta and was appointed as Portfolio Manager for the Discretionary Mandates business at Framont & Partners Management Ltd and Member of the Investment Committee. Mr. Rusconi has also been a Lecturer and Teaching Assistant of Associate Professor Andrea Monticini – Catholic University of Sacred Heart (Milan) for Econometrics, Financial Econometrics and Applied Econometrics courses.
3. MARKETS THESE DAYS
Here we start with the 1st number of our monthly newsletter in which we will discuss financial and economic themes from the recent past and the future and their implications on the Tactical & Strategic Asset Allocation of Our portfolios and funds.
The first sessions of this 2016 are showing us that a global concern is spreading on the markets; on one side we have economic problems deriving from the “less-actual-growth-than-before” such as that one of the China and some other countries where the growth is still not well plant in the economy, with economic data that may seem contrasting, like in the Eurozone. These sessions were also accompanied by geopolitical tensions, from the North Korea and its development of a portable H-bomb or those deriving from the Middle East (Saudi Arabia and Iran).
Figure 1 – US, EU, UK & JAP Inflation expectations [January 2016]
During the last weeks and in the last days we have seen a release of economic data in the US that shows an improvement in the market conditions especially those linked to the services sector, but with a drag highlighted into the manufacturing and the metals and mining sectors; the latter been dragged down by the global rout into the commodities markets and especially by the oil sector. We saw a contraction of the ISM Manufacturing index for December at the level of 48.2 and an increase of the ISM Non-Manufacturing Index at the level of 55.3.
This tendency should be confirmed for the first quarter of 2016 with the Non Manufacturing sector balancing the Manufacturing one, and the households consumptions level should be helped by the expansion of the labour market conditions and from the low prices of the oil and its derivatives.
If we take a look to the minutes of the FOMC meeting held on the 16th December we can read that the rate hiking during the 2016 will take place after taking into account the inflation path.
The inflation, either the actual levels but also the expectations (see Fig. 1 for the Inflation Expectations for the main countries) will be the one and only focus of the FED; the level of the price which will be closely monitored as the chances of another rate hike are very high, although not before March 2016.
In the Eurozone, on the other hand, we are facing a situation where the increase of the Quantitative Easing announced by the Governor Draghi on the last 3rd December meeting can give another chance to the investors and financial operators and to the households to benefit from the low levels of borrowing costs.
In the Eurozone the growth is mainly sustained by the service sector and by the internal demand than the manufacturing sector.
In these market conditions, households’ expenditure could benefit from the purchasing power recovery benefiting by the slump in the commodities prices and the increase in the labour market conditions; the unemployment statistics are getting far way better than the previous months.
The inflation expectations could be drag down by the oil prices that are amid a critical slump, fuelled by a contraction of the industrial consumptions and the slowing down of some economies.
4. FOCUS – BOND MARKETS
What the investors on the Bond markets were expecting after the last FOMC meeting of the last December was the steepening of the curve but unfortunately this never happened.
As you can notice from the Figure 2 below, where we highlighted the spread between the 2 yrs and the 10 yrs US Treasuries, but the same apply also to European Markets, the spread itself contracted to the flattest levels since 2008.
What we saw on the bond markets in the first days of the New Year is the surge in bond prices and lowering of yields as this asset class is seen as a safe haven for investors amid economic turmoil, especially those arising by China’s markets.
Figure 2 – Spread Treasuries 2y10y [08 January 2016]
We had only a small halt of this tendency on Friday (8th January) after the job report where the government data showed an increase of 292,000 jobs in December; but soon the bull movements on the Treasuries had been restored after the release of the data on the average hourly earnings that shown an increase less than the forecasts.
Our view for 2016 is to keep a close look to the High Yield bonds denominated in EUR over the Investment Grade ones due to the tightening of the spreads. This view allow us to extract returns in the bond markets from references that are better than the other as we do not want to allow the risk to permeate the portfolio of Our Clients.
We want to point out that we look also to the short-mid duration brackets, especially on the USD denominated bond.
5. UPCOMING INFORMATION TO BE RELEASED
In the coming days we are going to focus on the following data releases:
- 12th January: Industrial Production MoM & YoY & Manufacturing Production MoM & YoY [UK]
- 13th January: CPI MoM & YoY [FRA] & Industrial Production SA MoM & WDA YoY
- 14th January: Industrial Production MOM & WDA YoY & NSA YoY [ITA]
- 15th January: CPI MoM & YoY [SPA]
- 13thJanuary: MBA Mortgage Application & US Crude Oil Inventories
- 14th January: Import Price Index MoM & Initial/Continuing Jobless claims
- 15th January: Retail Sales Advance MoM
- 15th January: Empire Manufacturing
- 20th January: MBA Mortgage Applications & Housing Starts & Building Permits.
DISCLAIMER: The only purpose of this document is to provide information about the current markets. This newsletter is prepared for information purposes only and should not be interpreted as investment advice. It does not constitute an offer or invitation by Framont to any person to buy or sell any security or instrument or to participate in any transaction or trading activity. It does not want to solicit the subscription of financial products and services, which must only be done after reading and understanding the Prospectus and any other related information. Framont & Partners Management Ltd verified very carefully the information contained in this document, but it does not ensure that such information is complete and correct and is not responsible either about the use that third parties make of such information or about any los s or damage that may arise after that use. Information included in this newsletter is considered as current as at the date of publication , without regard to the date on which you may read or be provided with such information. We do not accept any liability arising from any inaccuracy or omission in the information on this website. Every investor should always read the Prospectus and any other available information before making an investment decision. Furthermore, the yield or other terminology used to indicate the return is not guaranteed and may go down as well as up. The performance figures quoted (if any) refer to the past and past performance is not a guarantee of future performance or a reliable guide to future performance. An investment product may be affected by changes in currency exchange rate movements thereby affecting your investment return therefrom. More details about Framont are available on the website www.framontmanagement.com.