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Summer heat wave makes way for return of political heat
Having returned from my annual summer holiday that took me across the heat-parched landscapes of western Europe, it feels like I have been cheated for the summer lull. As last month’s asset class returns table above shows, July turned out to be a decent month for most investors despite all the dark clouds on the economic horizon, be they trade wars, looming Brexit headwinds or Emerging Market stress from US$ strength.

No-deal Brexit?
British media and currency markets were shaken this week by comments from UK trade minister Liam Fox over the potential for a ‘no-deal’ Brexit. The “intransigence” of the Eurocrats in Brussels has left the chance of the UK exiting the EU without any agreed deal at “60-40”, according to Dr Fox.

‘Tax cut tail wags the US profits dog’ – Q2 earnings update
At some point, most of us have come across the phrase ‘and that’s the bottom line’. As investors, the origin of this phrase directly impacts us via stock market levels.

Iran under fire
As signposted by the Trump administration for a while, harsh US sanctions against Iran came into force on Tuesday. The White House confirmed on Monday that sanctions which had been suspended as part of the landmark 2015 nuclear deal would be reinstated, as part of President Trump’s effort to “stand up to the Iranian regime’s aggression.” It marks the latest development in 10 August 2018 Trump’s campaign against the “horrible, one-sided” Obama-era deal, from which the US withdrew in May.

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