As the current challenges in the department store sector are increasing, the question is whether the department store model, in its current form, is sustainable and relevant in the current retail market. Is its decline inevitable, or can it possibly be reversed? What could be done to address the many challenges it faces and make it fit for purpose in the modern age of retailing?
Although the economic outlook for the UK in 2018 is mixed, we believe the consensus is too pessimistic on growth. The global economy is now firing on all cylinders – which will benefit the international-facing UK market – and we believe the risks to growth, inflation and interest rates are all to the upside, in the UK as well as globally.
The strategy has been in existence in the life and pensions space for more than 14 years and, given its long-term track record of outperformance, we decided to launch an OEIC version to broaden its appeal to investors. The Fund focuses on high quality, UK income-generating assets and maintains a diversified, conservative investment style.
2017 has been interesting for a whole host of reasons. Not only have we seen the global economy deliver a sustained expansion but central banks have also started to gradually withdraw the extraordinary monetary policy that has helped to support asset prices over the past decade. However, over recent months we have begun to see equity markets run out of steam, with some indices now largely tracking sideways.