Intelligence

Trade war uncertainty – you can bet on it!

Uncertainty – you can bet on it!: While the future of our trade war with China is unclear, one thing is for sure: there’s plenty more where that came from. According to Forbes, President Trump is threatening to place 15-percent tariffs on $160 billion worth of Chinese goods come December 15, and companies like Best Buy and Mattel are bracing for the impact.

If costs are passed onto the consumer, companies could see the effects in their holiday sales. “There’s a risk that American shoppers, who have kept the economy humming even as manufacturers scale back, could start to tighten their purse strings if tariffs lead to price increases,” writes Forbes.

Social responsibility of big business : Until the financial crisis, big businesses ascribed to the view that paying shareholders dividends was sufficient for the company’s success. Now, in a economists, business gurus and blue-chip CEOs confirmed that for true success, social responsibility is a must-have, according to The Economist.

Ivy league carries little weight: Cheap funds that tracked the stock market have consistently outperformed 60 leading university endowments over the last ten years, according to The FT. The news is somewhat surprising, given how the active “endowment model”–one where private equity managers and hedge funds play a larger role in an investment portfolio–was once championed as lucrative.

From the FT: “I’m paying a fortune in fees, commissions and carry [performance fees]. Why shouldn’t we just index and be done with the hassle,” said an endowment board member who declined to be named.”

What CEO-hopping says about the economy: Resumes of CEOs seem to be growing, as chief officers at some of the world’s largest countries seem to hop from job to job. Why won’t they stay put? According to Bloomberg, these record-short stints actually indicate a strong economy.

“One explanation is that CEOs, who have a bird’s eye view of the economy, prudently go out at the very top of the business cycle. It’s always better to leave on a high note, and leave the ugly business of layoffs, closures and other hard decisions to the chump who takes the reins.”

Content isn’t just for Christmas: Our UK team hosted another one of its insightful Breakfast & Brainfood series last week with content marketing specialists from The FT, The Content Marketing Association, and Morningstar. The panel explored the impact of content marketing and how to do it most effectively in financial services. Check out our blog for more!