Ofelia Marín-Lozano | We started 2022 with inflation significantly higher than it had been since the 2008 financial crisis. We began to spend the savings accumulated during the pandemic, as a result of the fall in consumption due to activity restrictions. As an indication, the average American over the last ten years used to spend 93% of his or her salary each month; during the pandemic, he or she spent…
Articles by Ofelia Marín Lozano
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Ofelia Marín Lozano | In March, April and May this year we will see published inflation close to or above 2% year-on-year. But this can simply be explained by the rise in oil prices. Crude oil, which a year ago, at the height of its confinement, fell to levels of around 30 dollars per barrel, is now trading above 60 dollars per barrel, is now trading at over 60 dollars. In our opinion, although inflation could pick up notably in the second quarter of 2021, with year-on-year readings above the 2% that the US Federal Reserve and the ECB have set as a benchmark for the long term, the underlying inflationary risks remain well under control and support the maintenance of an accommodative monetary policy for a prolonged period of time. Simply put: core inflation only rises consistently if wages rise and, with higher unemployment, it is very difficult for that to happen.
Ofelia Marín Lozano | A business with a positive operating result is viable in the long run, even with a lot of debt. So is a country with a primary surplus. Spain has not achieved this since 2007, with the real estate bubble. But the different behaviour of countries in an ordinary, normal situation (their higher or lower deficits, their surpluses or not in good times) can mark a very different future evolution, which is not evident at first sight. These notable differences are well exemplified by a comparison between Italy and Spain.
Ofelia Marín- Lozano | For some sectors there has not been a stock market crisis. However, others – banks, telecoms, oil,… – have in nine months gone from trading at 19x PER to trading at less than 5x. If everything returns to ‘normal,’ this does not seem sustainable. As a example, in Spain, for the price of the largest retailer (Inditex), we have the two largest banks (Santander and BBVA), the largest insurance company (Mapfre) or the largest oil company (Repsol).
Ofelia Marín-Lozano (1962 Capital SICAV) | The starting point is much more solid than in 2008, when the banks emerged from many years of double-digit credit expansion and high rates. In addition, European banks have significantly improved their equity base, which is double, or even almost triple, the levels reached a decade ago in all their solvency ratios. The ratio of higher quality capital to risk-weighted assets, (CET1 or common equity tier 1) has risen from levels below 6% in 2011 to over 14% today.
Ofelia Marín-Lozano | In November we already know the results of the first three quarters of 2019. And, in general, there have been no big surprises. The large global companies, European and North American, have registered sales increases in line with the nominal growth of the global economy, close to 4.5% (3% real growth plus 1.5% inflation).
Ofelia Marín-Lozano (Capital Sicav) | Political events have always had a certain influence in the behaviour of financial markets in the short term. Although what dominates in the long term are company results, any uncertainty coming from the world of politics has a cost, and currently there are many uncertainties weighing on the minds of investors.
Ofelia Marín-Lozano | The three countries with greatest GDP growth, both in current and constant terms (the US, Spain and France), have been those that have experienced a greater increase in population, coming from first- or second-generation immigrants.
Ofelia Marín-Lozano (1962 Capital SICAV) | 12 April was the deadline for the UK to decide of it was going to leave the EU without an agreement or, on the other hand, seek a new delay. The worst scenario for markets, a no deal Brexit, has been ruled out. The EU have granted the UK a new delay, which ends at the end of October 2019, to see if they can finally come to some kind of conclusion.
Ofelia Marín Lozano | Why in the last 11 years, an investor in the American banking sector has obtained a positive profitability of 70%, whereas an investor in the European banking sector has obtained a negative return of 60%.