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Weekend reading: Triggered

Weekend reading: Triggered post image

Good reads from around the Web.

Well it wasn’t a long-game April Fool. As we all know Britain has triggered Article 50, and the process of giving up a lot for a little has begun.

I don’t intend debating the pros and cons again today. Regular readers know my views. Some old regular readers never forgave me them and left the website, which is fair enough.

The PM Theresa May made a good fist of trying to promise everything to everyone. That’s probably the only sensible strategy at this point, although it might bite us back down the line.

But I preferred President of the European Council Donald Tusk’s statement, obviously:

“There is no reason to pretend that this is a happy day, neither in Brussels nor in London.

“After all, most Europeans – including almost half the British voters – wish that we would stay together, not drift apart.”

Yes, nearly half. That’s not something you hear much around our part of the world, eh?

A friend summed up her feelings with the following photo. Some of you can have a snigger at the back if you want to. I’ll delete anything nasty in the comments.

Source: A friend.

It will be interesting to see if triggering Article 50 does lead to any concrete changes in the UK economy. So far we’ve been running on the powerful momentum we had despite, you know, being shackled to Europe and all that, but juiced by the low pound. (And, I suppose, by many households made cheery by what they see as a brighter future, and spending more.)

Like most investor types, I was wrong-footed by the UK’s strength following the vote, though I’d argue I realized and admitted it sooner than most.

Normally uncertainty derails markets. At the least I expected inward investment to fall (which matters because as a nation we’re funded by the kindness of strangers) and the London property market to roll over (which matters because we’re probably in a house price bubble).

Neither occurred. Was it a Wiley Coyote moment due to the delay with Article 50 (which David Cameron had said he’d trigger right away) or has the invisible hand divined things won’t be so bad for Britain?

The crash in Sterling suggests the jury is out, and ordering pizzas and coffee.

Here are a few quick takes on the investing consequences from around the Web:

  • Article 50: Reactions from The City – Financial News
  • Basically the same trawl, but with a few additional voices – Independent
  • What does it mean for UK investors – Money Observor
  • What now? [More passive-minded]Nutmeg
  • What triggering Article 50 means for investors – FT Advisor

Elsewhere, hope your boat – or goat – wins!

From the blogs

Making good use of the things that we find…

Passive investing

Active investing

  • James Montier: 6 impossible things before breakfast [PDF]GMO
  • Are we neck deep in a bull market or not? – All Star Charts
  • Is Judges Scientific a miniature Berkshire Hathaway? – Richard Beddard
  • Nice interview with Brent Beshore, private equity investor – Morgan Housel
  • The secrets of startup guru Gil Penchina – Startup Grind
  • Hedge fund investors favour names with gravitas [Research]SSRN

Other articles

Product of the week: They’re not inclined to throw money around in God’s Own Country, so perhaps there’s a catch – but Yorkshire Building Society now provides the highest paying easy access savings account, according to The Telegraph, at 1.15%. You have to open the account by post or in person, and you can only withdraw money on one day of the year. Which isn’t my definition of ‘easy access’, but then this is Yorkshire we’re talking about, we’re grading on the scale. Note some current accounts pay more. You can get 1.5% (with a bit of effort) from Santander, for instance.

Mainstream media money

Some links are Google search results – in PC/desktop view these enable you to click through to read the piece without being a paid subscriber of that site.1

Passive investing

  • The conventional wisdom of active fund management – Vanguard Advisor
  • Matt Levine: Equity fund management is a solved problem – Bloomberg
  • Blackrock ditches expensive stock pickers – Value Walk

Active investing

  • Some parts of the world are cheaper than others – Telegraph
  • Americans are scarily optimistic about stocks [Graph]Bloomberg
  • Buy, sell, or adapt [Podcast, search result]FT Alphaville
  • How the Yellen Fed got religion over stock market and policy – Bloomberg
  • Actually, is it time to bonds? – Yahoo Finance
  • Investment trust discounts are close to 15-year lows – ThisIsMoney

A word from a broker

Other stuff worth reading

  • The new Residence Nil Rate Band for inheritance tax is here – Guardian
  • How George Osborne might cope with the pensions taper [Search results]FT
  • You can get a mortgage when you’re self-employed – Telegraph
  • Karen Millen bankrupted by a tax avoidance scheme gone wrong – Express
  • Mortgage tax relief cut doesn’t add up for buy-to-let landlords – Guardian
  • Global house prices [With interactive affordability tool]The Economist
  • When others die, tontine investors win – New York Times
  • The top 50 rural areas of the UK for quality of life – ThisIsMoney
  • George Osborne picks the perfect date to launch new fashion brand – Guardian

Book of the week: Are you a stock picker? Don’t worry, you can whisper it here. Long time UK financial writer Phil Oakley is a fellow traveler, and he is now taking pre-orders for his new book, How To Pick Quality Shares. Oakley will suggest a three-step process to selecting the best long-term investments, and also debunk the variously-stepped processes of others. I kid, but not unkindly. Personally I treat all these books like a five-year old enjoys a roast dinner. Have a ponder, stir with your fork, devour the bits you find tasty – and bin the rest.

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  1. Note some articles can only be accessed through the search results if you’re using PC/desktop view (from mobile/tablet view they bring up the firewall/subscription page). To circumvent, switch your mobile browser to use the desktop view. On Chrome for Android: press the menu button followed by “Request Desktop Site”. []

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{ 59 comments… add one }
  • 51 The Investor April 3, 2017, 3:10 pm

    @Dean — It’s meant to be an armband.

  • 52 Simon April 4, 2017, 10:13 am

    I really don’t agree with this decision to leave the EU and will do all I reasonably can to reverse it, whether that happens now or in future years; many of the people who voted Out are near the end of their earthly span and if we are steadfast then there will be many opportunities to throw their works back into the bin of history where they belong. Now I am not asking people to like folk who voted to leave; after all, their decision showed a side to being English which I am sorry to say has always been there, which is unpleasant, and which huge attempts at further education have simply failed to improve, let alone eradicate. While falsely claiming “patriotism”, they have made being English into something of an international embarrassment. But we should nonetheless try to forgive them while doing all we can to reverse the result.

  • 53 The Investor April 4, 2017, 8:40 pm

    Good graph from The Economist reinforcing my point above about just how much of a non-issue the EU was in Britain until a small band of Tories and ex-Tories made it into a national crisis:


  • 54 The Rhino April 6, 2017, 1:37 pm

    off-topic but anyone thinking of getting a LISA?

    They don’t look very attractive to me, i.e. already owns house, has a SIPP on the go..

  • 55 The Investor April 6, 2017, 1:46 pm

    @TheRhino — I am hoping to do a post on this for next Tuesday. (Never enough time! 🙂 )

  • 56 The Rhino April 6, 2017, 2:29 pm

    @TI good idea, very timely. MSE has gone to town on it with some nice guides/resources etc.

    I’m just smashing in this years ISAs as we speak. I’m pretty sure LISAs aren’t for me. If I were a year older they definitely wouldn’t be for me.. getting old..

  • 57 Dean Sharrock April 7, 2017, 12:48 pm

    That graph is like showing a spike in interest in football during the World Cup, and saying that it’s all Gary Lineker’s fault.

  • 58 GRG April 8, 2017, 10:53 am

    @Simon I am one of those nearly at the end of my earthly span who voted to stay and I am furious with the younger generation who were too idle to get off their backsides and vote. If they had voted in the same numbers as the older generation it would not have happened. So look to yourselves and stop blaming everyone else.

  • 59 Kraggash April 8, 2017, 3:15 pm

    @GRG The % of young voting was reported, initially, incorrectly. It was about 64%.


    That was about the same as the rest of the population, apart from over 65s.

    I asked a relative (over 70 y.o.) why he voted Leave. He said he did it for his children and grandchildren’s sake. Who (I think) voted remain…..


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