The latest FIFA corruption scandal holds reputation risk for sponsors. Many sponsors continue to prioritise the advertising value over the responsible organization of events. Improvements will only happen if sponsors insist on new, transparent rules.
Sustainable building means energy-efficient construction. Styrofoam insulation is usually the magic word, but it is a non-breathable material and can therefore lead to mold. Also, it can catch fire easily. Therefore, the German Steico Group has turned away from these materials, becoming one of the largest suppliers in the field of ecological building materials. With the use of wood fibers Steico provides an improved indoor climate. The material costs may be higher in the beginning but in the long run it will save costs. Energy and CO2 emissions can already be reduced in the production of raw materials, which is partly due to the fact that the wood used comes from sustainably managed forests.
Environment and sustainability are gaining more and more importance in today´s society. In this interview about his special fund, Clemens Klein reveals why solar stocks are interesting in particular.
The big trends of the past weeks such as the appreciation of the US dollar, the weakening oil price, falling yields, and the outperformance of Eurozone equities have reversed in the past days and weeks, in some cases drastically so.
What is behind all of this?
When both demand (i.e. economic growth) and supply (i.e. production growth) are weak and the central bank policies are very loose, we have a textbook example of an environment causing yields to fall and/or remain low. Indeed, yields were high after the Great Depression in 2008/2009. Having transitioned to a slow, weak, and fragile recovery, yields have started to fall and bond prices have started to rise (i.e. asset price inflation). Even if the economic regime remains unchanged, the market environment may change; the higher the asset price, the lower the expected return or yield.
Real global economic growth was surprisingly weak in Q1. The preliminary estimate for the annualised growth rate of Q4 2014 to Q1 2015 is only 1.5%. This is mainly due to disappointingly weak growth of the GDP in the USA (+0.2%), in China (+5.3%), in the UK (+1.2%), and in Japan (+1.5%; estimate). Brazil (-2.4%) and Russia (-11.5%) have even shrunk (both figures are preliminary estimates). In line with this situation, the data surprises have been largely negative, and the trend of downward revisions for economic growth has continued.
Bond investors are faced with a difficult environment. Do corporate bonds offer the chance of a halfway decent yield?
Stampfl: The statement that bond investors are faced with a difficult environment is actually an erroneous one. A balanced portfolio consisting of bonds from the peripheral countries and the core countries across all sectors would have seen a very good risk-adjusted performance in the past weeks and months. Also, complementing the BB segment with corporate bonds generates a certain degree of surplus yield, which in funds like Reserve Corporate causes is used to boost the development. That is like switching from winter tyres to summer tyres in spring. It facilitates a smoother running and lower fuel consumption. Or, translating it to the case of the fund, it results in a surplus yield at lower volatility.