Capital Markets Corporate

October 15, 2021

Our Weekly Newsletter

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Across Instinctif Partners’ Financial Services team, we are always keeping an eye on the key developments taking place across the sector to evaluate their impact on the many businesses we work with. Here we share our picks of the week’s most interesting news, and our expert views.

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UK job vacancies reach 20-year high
The number of job vacancies in the UK has hit a record high, according to the ONS. Vacancies hit 1.1 million between July and September, the highest level since records began in 2001, with the largest increase in vacancies in the retail sector and motor vehicle repair. The UK unemployment rate was estimated at 4.5%, compared with a rate of 4% pre-pandemic, and the number of employees on payrolls showed another monthly increase, rising by 207,000 to a record 29.2 million in September. (From BBC, 12th October 2021)

More pension funds urged to sign up to ‘net zero’ climate target
More than two-thirds of the biggest final salary pension schemes have failed to make robust commitments to fight the climate emergency, according to campaign group Make My Money Matter. Almost three-quarters of the top 100 funds, run for staff of some of the UK’s leading employers, have been challenged to declare a stronger strategy on combating global warming. Launched by film director Richard Curtis and ex-Bank of England governor Mark Carney, the group has published a list of holdouts alongside a list of pension schemes that have already signed up to ‘net zero’ carbon emission targets. (From Daily Mail, 12th October 2021)

Interest rate rise is likely this year, warns City
Interest rates in Britain will rise before Christmas, according to a new City forecast. Economists at Bank of America predict a first modest rise in the base rate of 0.15 percentage points in December, taking the benchmark rate to 0.25%, and a second rise of 0.25 points to 0.5% in February. Previously, they had not expected any tightening of policy until early next year, but now expect the Bank of England to push up rates to preserve its inflation-fighting credibility in the face of rising prices. (From The Times, 12th October 2021)

UK funds split over disclosing personal stakes 
A push for greater transparency by Interactive Investor has divided some of the UK’s largest retail fund houses. Opinion is split over whether portfolio managers should have to disclose the personal stakes they have in the funds they manage. Many have argued that these disclosures aid good governance and help retail investors to make better fund choices. (From Financial Times, 11th October 2021)

Wealth advisers must scrutinise ESG funds
In a speech last week, Mark Manning, technical specialist for sustainable finance and stewardship at the FCA, called for advice firms and fund managers to do more to ensure that products align with the regulator’s guiding principles for ESG investments. He added that the Government would soon look to publish plans for more standardised, sustainable investment labels to help consumers navigate this space better. (From Citywire Wealth Manager, 7th October 2021)

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