Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

(New York)

Like Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch is in the middle of a big bet on its wealth management unit The broker has decided to focus less resources on hiring senior advisors and more on training younger staff. Accordingly, its staff costs have shrunk despite growing its advisor base by 2%. By some accounts the early signs for the experiment are good, but it will take a long time to see how well it plays out.

FINSUM: The whole industry has a bit of an inheritance problem right now, since there are herds of baby boomer advisors who are set to retire in the coming years, and as yet, a dearth of young advisors to take their places.

(New York)

Most of the market’s panic over retail centers on the threat from Amazon and the shift to ecommerce from brick and mortar (admittedly related threats). However, there is more out there to be worried about than just those. In particular, the apparel market is not growing very quickly, as it is losing market share to other areas of consumer spending, such as restaurants, entertainment and wellness. Staffing costs are also rising at the same time as price pressure is growing, putting a strain on margins.

FINSUM: Amazon’s growth in apparel sales is also well-outpacing the overall industry’s growth rate, which means it is already stealing market share on top of these other challenges.

Friday, 19 January 2018 10:34

Goldman to Rebuild Trading Arm After Slump

(New York)

Goldman Sachs has stuck to its guns with its trading division despite numerous changes to the industry and its competitors revamping. However, the bank finally appears to be changing its strategy. Since 2009, Goldman’s fixed income trading revenue has shrunk from over $23 bn in 2009, to just over $5 bn in 2017. Now the bank is changing its focus away from serving hedge fund clients, whom it has become overly reliant on, and towards big corporate clients, who offer a different sort of “flow” business based on interest swaps and other corporate needs.

FINSUM: We think it is smart for Goldman to diversify the focus on its fixed income unit. Especially since the $20bn plus revenue days don’t look like they are coming back.

Friday, 19 January 2018 10:30

Why Oil Will Tumble Soon


Oil prices have done very well over the last several months. Prices have been rising at the pump, making producers happier and consumers less so. However, gloomier days may lay ahead. The IEA thinks US shale oil output may soon surge on the back of higher prices. If this happens, it would undue the supply reduction OPEC’s cuts have created and send the market downward. Additionally, it would likely lead to an unwind of OPEC’s cuts, as if they were maintained, the reductions would be disproportionately benefitting OPEC’s competitors.

FINSUM: Oil prices have been doing better, but that does not change the fact that world has a fundamental oversupply of oil. This is not a problem by any means, but is a factor that will weigh on prices for years to come.

Thursday, 18 January 2018 11:40

PIMCO Warns of Big Market Fall

(Los Angeles)

PIMCO says there is one really big thing to fear in markets above all else—the lack of fear. The current “melt up” is symptomatic of extreme investor confidence, and that is cause for grave concern, says PIMCO, one of the world’s largest money managers. According to PIMCO, “The fact that the fear is gone is the main reason why we should be worried”, continuing “That means most investors are now pretty fully invested and that means they will want to get out if the markets start to correct -- exacerbating the downdraft”.

FINSUM: We think PIMCO has a great point. The market’s start to this year is pretty insane—it is on track to triple in value in 2018. Is this the final run before a big downturn?

Contact Us



Subscribe to our daily newsletter

We use cookies to improve our website. By continuing to use this website, you are giving consent to cookies being used. More details…