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Highlights from the IMAS Chief Investment Officer Roundtable 2016

On 13th December 2016, the Investment Management Association of Singapore (IMAS) organized the Annual Chief Investment Officer Roundtable 2016 at the Fullerton Hotel in Singapore.

Top Chief Investment Officers in the region spoke about the outlook for emerging markets, United States, China, Europe and the geopolitical landscape.


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  • Neeraj Seth – Head of Asian Credit, BlackRock
  • Peter Sartori – Head of Asian Equity, Nikko Asset Management
  • Mark Wang –  Chief Investment Officer, NTUC Income Insurance
  • John Doyle III – ED & Chief Investment Officer, Equities & Multi Assets, UOB Asset Management
  • Qian Wang – MD & Chief Economist Asia-Pacific, Vanguard Investments
  • Desmond Soon – Head of Investment Management (Asia ex-Japan) & Portfolio Manager, Western Asset Management
  • Anish Mathew – CEO & CIO, Sundaram Asset Management


The Opening: 2017 Outlook 

Chief Investment Officers (CIOs) from various asset management firms discussed several issues regarding the outlook on China and other emerging markets, how the Trump presidency has unnerved investors, and how the possibility of several rate hikes will impact the economy.

All of CIOs are hopeful and bullish, though advised caution of possible bears lurking around the corner.


In Discussion: China

The discussion moved to the outlook of China. Most investors remained particularly fascinated with China and their monetary policies.

Despite slowing growth and increasing debts, Qian Wang, Managing Director and Chief Economist of Vanguard Investments advised to “diversify and look long term”. She further added that we should not worry about China’s outlook in the short term (1-2years). However, she cautioned investors to be vigilant in the mid-term and to remain hopeful in the long term.


In Discussion: Fed Rate Hike

The next topic covered was on the Federal Reserve bank’s initiative to increase rates to 1.5% in 2017. All CIOs are unanimous on the Fed increasing rate but how the fed is going to implement the hike differs.

The market has likely priced in the expectations and do not seem too jittery about a rate hike. John J. Doyle III of UOB Asset Management believes and remains optimistic that “ The Fed (Central Bank) will be ahead of the next recession cycle”.

Should a recession occur during that time, the Federal Reserve will still have room to drop interest rates.


In Discussion: Spotlight on President-Elect Donald Trump

The discussion inevitably shifted to the hottest topic in recent times: President-Elect Donald Trump.

His controversial policies such as forcing American companies to move back home, clamping down on immigration as well as abolishing several trade pacts have caused a storm.

However, the market seems to be very bullish on his policies. Investors believe that his anti-globalization policies will benefit America and as a result, benefit other markets.


2016 Roundup: The Chief Investment Officers

The Chief Investment Officers closed the Annual Roundtable by highlighting a few significant events that will be occurring in 2017. Events to watch includes the Federal Reserve rate hikes, Trump officially taking on the role as President, the elections in Germany and the elections in France.

The event is covered by Caproasia Online Editorial Team


About IMAS

IMAS is the representative body in investment managers in Singapore.

The Investment Management Association of Singapore (IMAS) was formed on 22 September 1997. It is a representative body of investment managers spearheading the development and growth of the industry in Singapore. It also serves as a forum for members in discussions as well as a collective voice where representation is needed on behalf of the investment management industry, facilitating training for its members, and contributing towards investor education. It has currently over 100 regular members, with combined AUM of more than S$800 billion.

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