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March 18, 2013

Family offices are rotating out of cash and bonds, and are instead upping their investments in equities and real estate, according to research. 

Family offices are rotating out of cash and bonds, and are instead upping their investments in equities and real estate, according to research.

The study by fund management firm Somerset Capital, which surveyed 51 family offices – predominantly from Europe – earlier this year, found 48% planned to increase their allocation to equities in 2013. Half of respondents said they wanted to boost their investments in real estate, while 46% were looking to bolster their private equity allocations.

February 18, 2013

As a long-term investment, renewable energy should appeal to families. Despite gloomy reports, there are still great opportunities.

For investors eyeing clean energy, these can feel like nerve-wracking times. The headlines are daunting – solar panel prices plummeting, a steep drop in funds going into renewable energy and the high-profile failure in the US of solar company Solyndra.

December 6, 2012

ETFs are changing the way that investment is done, but family offices remain wary of them. Are they missing a trick?

For most people, exchange traded funds are all about beta. And since Lehman Brothers vanished in a puff of smoke four years ago beta is what a lot of people have been happy with: protecting wealth has been the name of the game.

November 27, 2012

Investors have grappled with emerging market investing for more than 30 years. Some have made serious money, many haven’t. Post the financial crisis, now is the right time for a fresh perspective.

When the German chancellor Angela Merkel visited Beijing in late August 2012, a new and strange dynamic in world affairs was in full view. In London, Frankfurt and New York, markets waited anxiously to hear not what Merkel might say about China, but what her counterparts would say about Europe.

November 22, 2012

Two swallows do not necessarily make a summer, but US banks JP Morgan and Wells Fargo are chirpy over prospects for the US housing market. Both reported a surge in mortgage lending in the quarter to September. JP Morgan’s Jamie Dimon said: “We believe the housing market has turned a corner.”

Two swallows do not necessarily make a summer, but US banks JP Morgan and Wells Fargo are chirpy over prospects for the US housing market. Both reported a surge in mortgage lending in the quarter to September. JP Morgan’s Jamie Dimon said: “We believe the housing market has turned a corner.”

This follows the Federal Reserve’s decision to print new dollar bills worth $40 billion (€30.5 billion), once a month, and use them to buy mortgage debt from the banks. In theory, this will encourage them to make new loans and juice the US economy.

November 19, 2012

Billionaire Lakshmi Mittal appears to be betting on a strong recovery of the UK’s construction industry, by investing more than £200 million (€248 million) of his family’s money into the sector.

Billionaire Lakshmi Mittal appears to be betting on a strong recovery of the UK’s construction industry, by investing more than £200 million (€248 million) of his family’s money into the sector.

Mittal Investments, the private investment vehicle of the family, is buying £285 million worth of assets in the UK from Lafarge and Anglo American, said a statement.

October 9, 2012

Five years after the credit crisis began we have entered a bull market for regulation. It is stretching further, and faster, than most of us realise. The process is inevitable, following recent excesses. Some aspects of it are beneficial. But the line between market regulation and capital punishment is becoming increasingly thin.

Five years after the credit crisis began we have entered a bull market for regulation. It is stretching further, and faster, than most of us realise. The process is inevitable, following recent excesses. Some aspects of it are beneficial. But the line between market regulation and capital punishment is becoming increasingly thin. 

October 5, 2012

Private equity and infrastructure will become the most popular investment areas for ultra-high net worth individuals and families, according to a member of a leading multi family office.

Private equity and infrastructure will become the most popular investment areas for ultra-high net worth individuals and families, according to a member of a leading multi family office.

Rick Pitcairn, chief investment officer of US-based Pitcairn and a founding member of Wigmore Association, told CampdenFB: “We are convinced that UHNW investors will increase allocations to various kinds of private equity opportunities over the coming months.”

September 20, 2012

To be sure, yields on high yield bonds – or junk, as it was once called – look less enticing than the 15% on offer three years ago. But those yields reflected fears that the global banking system was close to collapse. These have now receded, making high yield safer.

Five years after the run on the UK bank Northern Rock, companies lacking blue chip status are struggling to extract loans from banks more interested in their own survival than backing expansion.

As a result, companies are turning to the capital markets to secure loans from wealthy investors and institutions. They are paying interest charges of between 5.5% and 7% - a fat premium to the nearly zero return on savings accounts and government bonds.

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