12 June 12 19:00–Tim Stevenson is Henderson Global Investors Pan European fund manager. Henderson Global Investors is represented in Israel by Meitav Investment House.
For some time we have been investing on the basis that European economies have been and are likely to see low rates of economic growth. It is now clear that in addition to that difficulty, the inability of European political leaders to have a decisive and unified approach to the economic challenges creates an additional headwind. It seems that domestic political agendas usually revolve around figuring a way to get re-elected at the next term (5-6 years away), rather than leaving a lasting legacy for the next generation. One challenge here is that no European politician is elected with a Pan-European mandate creating a natural mismatch between their platform and the role they’ve been cast in to, i.e. saving Europe.
While this can have a detrimental effect on many companies, there are equally a number of companies that are doing their best to expand their operations in faster growing economies or sectors, and above all to be independent from government influence as far as possible. The weakness of many of Europe’s utility companies for example has in large part been caused by tighter regulation – a factor that has also affected telecom companies. At the same time, Nokia’s woes have nothing to do with a poor political environment, just as the success of Inditex (clothes retailer including the Zara brand) is due to great products and efficient sourcing…Read More>>