Quarterly Bulletin Q3 – 2019

Summer began as if the financial markets would be relatively calm. The recovery in mergers and
acquisitions, which had started in the previous quarter, quickly lost momentum. But the markets
still delivered some surprises, as we know can happen. Air Canada announced its intention to
acquire all the outstanding shares in Air Transat, and bond rates suddenly became highly
volatile in early September. Once again, our diversified positions allowed us to post a positive
return for the quarter. Now let’s take a more detailed look.

Quarterly Bulletin Q2 – 2019

Not all accidents on the financial markets are avoidable. There were situations in the last quarter that tested our resilience. But once again, by diversifying the overall portfolio well and focusing on arbitrage opportunities day-in and day-out, we were able to post results that are, at the very least, acceptable.

Quarterly Bulletin Q1 – 2019

Even though the period was marked by an unusual combination of upward trends, on both the
equity and bond markets, and by a remarkable about-face by the U.S. Federal Reserve (the Fed), the Amethyst Fund performed well at the start of the year. The Fund’s three segments were able to seize opportunities and deliver attractive returns on the first quarter.

Quarterly Bulletin Q4 – 2018

By mid-December stock markets had become so volatile that the financial markets were under a cloud of fear. Despite a rally that began on Christmas Eve, the markets racked up record losses for the month of December and were down sharply for the year. At year end, the S&P/TSX composite total return index was down 5.4% on the month, and down 8.9% on the year. The bond markets were also buffeted from all sides.

Quarterly Bulletin Q4 – 2017

In the fourth quarter, the economic and political news was marked by a synchronized global economic upsurge, rapidly expanding corporate profits, the adoption of a sweeping tax reform bill in the U.S. and somewhat eased geopolitical tensions. These factors continued to drive buoyant stock markets, pushing the S&P 500 up to 2,674 by year’s end. This was a gain of approximately 20% on the year, and it clearly surpassed the expectations of even the most optimistic financial strategists.

Quarterly Bulletin Q3 – 2017

Economies are doing very well, thank you. In spite of the expected impact from the hurricanes, the U.S. economy’s growth in the third quarter surprised most observers, reaching 3% according to the initial estimates of the U.S. Department of Commerce. Growth in the previous quarter stands at 3.1%. In Canada, even though we knew that the 3.7% and 4.5% growth achieved in the first two quarters of 2017 was unsustainable, the projected rate for the third quarter is still 2%. So the final figure for 2017 is expected to be approximately 3%. Annualized growth of the global economy now stands at around 3.7%, and the manufacturing indicators (global PMIs) are almost systematically reaching unprecedented highs.

Quarterly Bulletin Q4 – 2016

The climax of the fourth quarter of 2016 was undoubtedly Donald Trump’s election to the White House and, probably more so, the Republican majorities in the House of Representatives and the Senate. After a shaky night, risk assets reacted positively the following day. The new president is in a strong position to implement, without too much opposition, his stimulus program, combining tax cuts and increased public spending.

Archives

2018

Even though the period was marked by an unusual combination of upward trends, on both the equity and bond markets, and by a remarkable about-face by the U.S. Federal Reserve (the Fed), the Amethyst Fund performed well at the start of the year. The Fund’s three segments were able to seize opportunities and deliver attractive […]

2017

In the fourth quarter, the economic and political news was marked by a synchronized global economic upsurge, rapidly expanding corporate profits, the adoption of a sweeping tax reform bill in the U.S. and somewhat eased geopolitical tensions.

2016

A multitude of risk factors have unsettled the markets during the first six months of the year.

2015

Fortunately, the North American economy continues the expansionary momentum en-joyed over the last 5 years. Despite some ambiguous data, the improving economic conditions are palpable. We do not see any signs of a pending recession, therefore North American equity markets should do well. The risks perceived by investors are related primarily to three concerns.

2014

Q3 2014 allowed some financial terms, absent from our lexicon for several years to resurface. Indeed, despite globalization which has been accelerating for decades, many economists and investors are now once again arguing in favor of the “decoupling” of economies to the benefit of the US and UK and to the detriment of Europe and […]