2019 Equity Gilt Study explores challenges to conventional economic wisdom
11 Apr 2019
Today, Barclays Research published its 2019 Equity Gilt Study.
The study provides in-depth analysis of current macroeconomic issues, with a medium- to long-term horizon. This year’s edition looks at the macroeconomic and financial implications of challenges to conventionally held economic wisdom on the following topics:
The rise of market power
In this chapter, we use the new Barclays Competitiveness Indicator (BCI) to provide deeper insights into the relationship between increased concentration and market power. One possible fallout from higher concentration is an intensification of market power and a corresponding reduction in competition. We consider whether decreased competition is threatening the US economy or whether current competitive pressures are beneficial to industries, investors and consumers. A condensed, illustrated version of this report, as well as two articles and a slideshow highlighting distinct aspects of the research, is available to the public here.
Beyond inflation targeting: Reconsidering tools, targets and theories
In this chapter, we look at how the phenomenon of "missingflation" has placed the efficacy of inflation targeting, a key tenet of developed market monetary policy, under scrutiny. The team evaluates inflation targeting in the larger history of global monetary policy and believes that while monetary policy may not change in the near term, central bankers are under pressure to look at broadening their objectives beyond inflation targeting as they struggle to lift inflation towards the target of 2%.
Rethinking emerging markets: Fables of the reconstruction
In this chapter, we look at expectations about the dynamic growth of Emerging Markets. Contrary to conventional wisdom, our analysts expect this growth to be undermined in the coming years as globalisation reverses and a preference for “localised production” takes hold. The trends in falling levels of investment – particularly foreign investment – will likely have a detrimental effect on capital deepening and technology transfer. This should also decrease productivity and weaken institutions, further reducing investments. There is scope for differentiation within Emerging Markets notably on size, human capital, technological prowess and local integration into Developed Market supply chains. However, those without these characteristics are likely to continue to surprise on the downside.
From scarcity to abundance: Implications of the new US energy economy
This chapter reviews how US tight oil growth has shifted energy markets from a mode of scarcity to abundance over the past decade and what this shift means from an economic perspective. The US transition from a giant net importer of energy towards becoming a net exporter has boosted the economy, up-ended oil markets, influenced global currencies and capital flows, and dislodged geopolitical alignments. Increased energy production has spurred US growth through trade, as well as investment and employment. Added energy independence should boost the USD’s fair value, while muted oil price levels and higher oil price volatility are likely to constrain global capital flows, particularly to emerging markets.
In publication since 1956, the Equity Gilt Study provides data, analysis and commentary on long-term asset returns in the UK and US. In addition to the macro discussions, this publication contains a uniquely long and consistent database: the UK data date back to 1899 and the US data – provided by the Center for Research in Security Prices at the University of Chicago – date to 1925.
The 2019 study is available to authorised clients of Barclays Investment Bank. Clients can log in to Barclays Live to read the full report.