Travelling to take advantage of the opportunities that arise through meetings with local managers, the Kairos multi-manager team recently had occasion to explore the situation in China. Most of the contacts with whom they met emphasized that the new administration’s attempts at economic reform to the detriment of growth will continue to fuel uncertainty in the short term. Weakening macroeconomic data could persist in the near future, but no one expects there to be a hard-landing, since the government seems willing to prevent it through ad hoc stimulus measures.
Beginning in the last few months of 2013, the macroeconomic scenario has shown clear signs of improvement thanks to measures taken by the Minister of Finance, Chidambaram and the new governor of the central bank, Rajan. The rate of inflation has fallen from 11% to 8%, the current account deficit is down from $88 billion to $35 billion and the currency has stabilized. The market has reacted positively to these developments, but everyone is waiting with bated breath for the general elections which will be held in April and May.
“We are thrilled to accept this award and all the more honored to have been selected by a wide panel of our peers,” announced Caterina Giuggioli, Sales Director of Kairos Julius Baer, after the Milan-based company was named the winner of the 2014 Euromoney award. Number one in the Hedge Fund Investments category, Kairos was ranked the top company directly by private bankers participating in the annual survey, which aims to provide a quantitative and qualitative analysis of the best private banking services in each region and service area.
A chiaroscuro continent, South America has traversed two decades of growth and incumbent crisis, forcing investors to carefully consider their steps; the countries that have contributed to growth in the region certainly include Colombia, which is enjoying dramatic economic growth without inflation, fueled by the infrastructural projects worth approximately $55 billion (roughly 15% of GDP) that the government has announced. The local stock market boasts five or six very promising names, but the banking and airline sectors are also interesting.
At a recent conference, managers from the Kairos multi-manager team were able to hear one of the most authoritative figures in international finance, George Soros, speak. The crux of his speech related to Europe, which he said remains a debt prison for the periphery countries. Although normalization has recently begun, the divergent trend between countries will stay in place until the disparate costs of financing for companies in the various countries aligns. In any case, an improvement has been seen in the periphery after the dramatic situation until not long ago.
Based on a vision formed not only through the attentive study and analysis of global socio-political and financial dynamics, but his in-depth, direct familiarity with many relevant situations and geographical areas as well, Dante Roscini, Professor of Business, Government and International Economy at Harvard Business School, gives a broad overview of current – and not only economic and financial – world dynamics.
Japan promises to be one of the financial investment world’s brightest stars in 2014 according to Michele Gesualdi, the manager who heads Kairos Partners’ multi-manager team and keeps a close eye on geographical and economic scenarios day in and day out as he puts together the Milanese investment boutique’s offer of multi-manager funds.
Spain and Greece have paid – and are still paying – the price of their sins, and a few opportunities are beginning to take shape on the horizon, notes David Grazzini, manager of Kairos Partners’ KIS Small Cap fund. He is based in London but more often than not you’ll find him traveling the world over to check out new opportunities and verify whether choices in place are still up with the times.
Dynamic asset allocation, affirmed and emerging talents, research conducted directly in London and New York, “because we have always believed that being where interesting new players are up and coming is what makes the difference”. Not to mention the meetings, countless meetings – over 2,500 alone in 2013, ten times the industry average – in which we learn more about managers and opportunities that we must often hunt for in the niches.
In a wide-ranging article on Italy’s polical state of affairs, along with expectations and concerns surrounding the country’s economy and crucial issues for its future, published in the Financial Times on 4 February, Paolo Basilico was quoted as saying, “We do not want politically driven choices”. Asked to comment on investors’ point of view, Basilico – who is Chairman and CEO of Kairos Partners – noted that, in politics as in other things, it takes time to build anew.