Markets under pressure as ‘Trump bump’ falters

Global markets recede as the so-called ‘Trump bump’ runs out of steam Despite share prices climbing sharply on the back of last November’s surprise election victory by Donald Trump, the fabled ‘Trump bump’ appears to be running out of steam as Wall Street signals its disapproval over the president’s failure to secure support for his most prominent pre-election pledge. Trump’s disappointment over his inability to pass the repeal of Obamacare through Congress was mirrored by tumbling US shares, as the market wobbled over the prospect of the administration’s power to deliver on a raft of growth-boosting measures, including a comprehensive package of tax cuts. Read more…

Are small businesses being locked out of commercial lending?

Small business in the spotlight as de-regulation hits the headlinesSmall businesses are an important part of the US economy, creating wealth and employment opportunities as well as supporting economic growth at grass-roots level. So are small business owners being unfairly hindered by the slew of regulations introduced following the financial crisis of 2008? It’s an issue that’s in the headlines at the moment as ‎President Trump embarks on a full-scale review of the Dodd-Frank Act (2010) which tightened lending restrictions on banks. But are startups finding it impossible to get a foothold, or is growth stalling for existing businesses because of the lack of availability of business funding? Read more…

Trump takes aim at Dodd-Frank

President Trump plans to repeal Dodd-Frank regulationsWhile Donald Trump and Johnny Depp may not appear to have much in common, they are both weighing in at different ends of the spectrum on whether or not the financial services industry requires more or less regulation. Depp is in dispute with his former managers whom he accuses of mismanaging his finances. He has filed 11 complaints and is seeking damages of more than $25 million. Trump, meanwhile, has reaffirmed this pre-election promises to loosen regulations by reversing post-financial-crisis reforms designed to discourage excessive risk-taking – including the dismantling of the Dodd-Frank law of 2010. Read more…

How will Trumponomics impact the US economy in 2017?

How will the new presidency affect the US economy?With the ideological and political differences between the outgoing Obama administration and the incoming Trump regime a million miles apart, it looks as if barely a single policy will remain unaffected in the coming months – from public spending to international relations. So far, the markets have reacted positively to predictions of increased growth fuelled by pronouncements over deregulation, tax reforms and infrastructure spending. But, with Trumponomics set to remain a dominant influence in the coming months, observers will be closely monitoring whether Trump’s deeds match his words and forecasting how his administration will balance higher growth with spiralling inflation without plunging the country into a recession. Read more…

Will President Trump boost the US economy?

Will President Trump boost the US economy?It seems as if the US economy may be set for an unexpected upturn as Trump prepares for presidency. The new Republican administration has pledged to ‘make America great again’ by putting its resources into boosting the economy which, together with expected trade restrictions is almost certain to fuel inflation above the average 2.2% of Obama’s second term. The economy may also get a boost from the deregulation of labour and environmental legislation. If there’s scope for economic expansion, Trump’s policies could kick-start growth and output and productivity could rise sharply, but as the economy approaches full capacity, inflation will soar. Read more…

Post Title: US growth picks up in Q3

Figures show better-than-expected growth figures during Q3 of 2016Figures show better-than-expected growth figures during Q3 of 2016

Recent figures from the Commerce Department show that the pace of US growth up-ticked in the third quarter, reaching its highest rate in two years and offering support to forecasts of greater economic stability. The economy grew at a 2.9 percent annualised rate in the third quarter, topping predictions of just 2.6 percent and reflected a spike in exports as well as an increase in federal spending. However, consumption growth dropped back over the same period to half the rate of the previous quarter. Read more…

IMF encourages global response to stimulate economic growth

The World Economic Outlook study by the IMF spotlights weaknesses in the global economyStudy by IMF spotlights weaknesses in global economy

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned that free trade is being increasingly seen as something that benefits the wealthy and warn that help is needed for people whose job prospects have been damaged by globalisation. In a statement from the organisation’s half-yearly World Economic Outlook study, it spotlights weaknesses in the global economy as being largely responsible for the stalling of trade growth over the past few years. It also acknowledged that anti-trade feelings could harden further, given the current climate. Read more…

Wells Fargo in meltdown over unethical conduct

Wells Fargo CEO John G. Stumpf under the spotlight as bank castigated for unethical conductWells Fargo CEO John G. Stumpf grilled over unethical conduct

Last year, the city of Los Angeles sued Wells Fargo for unethical customer conduct, amid allegations that the bank had secretly opened unauthorised accounts on behalf of thousands of customers. The bank has since reached settlements totalling almost $200 million. At a September hearing before the House Financial Services Committee, Wells Fargo CEO John G. Stumpf was grilled over the bank’s transgressions and although he announced a pay forfeit of $41 million in pay and made a promise to drop the bank’s incentive programme, few of his interrogators were impressed. Read more…

US companies should review ‘pale, male and stale’ boardroom

Shareholder advisor ISS advises refresh of tired boardroomShareholder advisor ISS advises refresh of tired boardroom

Corporate governance advisor ISS is recommending that the United States’ top companies – including Alphabet and Berkshire Hathaway – should review their board recruitment policies to reflect increased diversity. As part of its latest annual survey, ISS canvassed opinions on boards where long-serving directors were the norm in a bid to promote changes in investor voting guidelines. In a recent Financial Times (FT) analysis of research data, more than a quarter of the American boards tracked fielded boards with a high proportion of older, long-serving directors. Read more…

US economy feeling the pinch as lines of credit are squeezed

Businesses treading water as banks tighten standards relating to applications for creditBusinesses treading water as banks tighten standards over applications for credit

A survey recently conducted by the Federal Reserve reveals indications that lines of credit are harder to come by, with loans to businesses on commercial and industrial (C&I) and commercial real estate (CRE) facing tougher criteria over the second quarter of 2016 than in the past three quarters. Companies in search of C&I loans for new inventory or relocation are facing tougher credit standards as banks continue to tighten lending, particularly in the case of medium- and large-sized companies. Read more…