A disputed result in November’s U.S. presidential election is now the number one concern for investors – even ahead of a second wave of Covid-19 – according to a new global survey.
The poll carried out by deVere Group, one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory and fintech organisations, asked more than 700 clients ‘What is your biggest investment worry for the rest of 2020?’
A contested U.S. election was the number one (72%); the impact of a Covid-19 second wave (18%) and U.S.-China trade war (5%). The remaining 5% was made up of other geopolitical issues, including Brexit.
735 people resident in the UK, North America, Europe, Asia, Africa, Latin America and Australasia took part in the poll.
Of the poll’s findings, deVere Group CEO and founder, Nigel Green says: “Investors around the world are beginning to freak about the U.S. presidential election.
“But not about whether Trump or Biden wins, rather over the looming possibility of a disputed outcome.
“President Trump is already questioning the legitimacy of the election, heightening the chances of a contested result and an ensuing constitutional crisis in the world’s largest economy.
“It’s getting ugly and investors are, rightly, concerned that this will generate massive waves of volatility in the markets, not only in the U.S., but around the world.”
He continues: “Investors are telling us this is their biggest investment worry for the rest of 2020.
“It is likely that any election-triggered volatility will be highly impactful for may be only two or three weeks.
“As always, investors should remain in the market during this time.”
Rational investors, Mr Green believes, should be capitalising on any election turbulence.
“There are two key reasons why investors should be building up their portfolios in volatile times.
“First, are long-term benefits. There are many unknowns, but what we do know is that over the longer-term the performance of stock markets is fairly predictable: they go up.
“Indeed, for this reason, over a longer time horizon, investing in equities is almost universally recognised as one of the best ways people can accumulate wealth.
“By not topping up and diversifying portfolios in volatile periods, investors are pushing back the longer-term benefits they could be starting to reap. Why forsake the long-term gains that would be generated on money invested now?”
“Second, the buying opportunities. The see-sawing markets are a chance for investors to put new money into markets at lower prices. A slump in the market means that there are high-quality equities available at more attractive prices.”
The deVere CEO concludes: “A contested outcome of the U.S. presidential election will almost inevitably send the stock markets into a temporary tailspin – and this is weighing on investors’ minds.
“I would argue, they should try and use the volatility to their financial advantage where possible and appropriate.”
Nigeria’s Real Estate Sector Shrinks by 8.06% in the Third Quarter -NBS
Economic uncertainty plunged Nigeria’s real estate sector by 8.06 percent in the third quarter of the year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
Nigeria’s statistics office said “In nominal terms, real estate services recorded a growth rate of –8.06 per cent in the third quarter of 2020, indicating a decline of –11.78 per cent points compared to the growth rate at the same period in 2019, and by 9.12 per cent points when compared to the preceding quarter.
“Quarter-on-quarter, the sector growth rate was 18.92 per cent.
“Real GDP growth recorded in the sector in Q3 2020 stood at -13.40 per cent, lower than the growth recorded in third quarter of 2019 by –11.09 per cent points, but higher relative to Q2 2020 by 8.59 per cent points.
“Quarter-on-quarter, the sector grew by 17.15 per cent in the third quarter of 2020.
“It contributed 5.58 per cent to real GDP in Q3, 2020, lower than the 6.21 per cent it recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2019.”
Nigeria’s economy contracted by 2.48 percent in the first nine months following a 6.10 percent and 3.62 percent contraction in the second and third quarters respectively.
Nigeria Requires N400 Billion Annually to Maintain Federal Roads -Senator Bassey
The Chairman of the Senate Committee on road maintenance, Senator Gersome Bassey, on Friday said Nigeria requires about N400 billion annually to maintain federal roads across the country.
The Senator, therefore, described the N38 billion budgeted for road repairs in the 2021 proposed Budget as grossly inadequate. According to him, nothing meaningful could be achieved by the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) with such an amount.
He said, “For the 35 kilometres federal roads in the country to be motorable at all times, the sum of N400bn is required on yearly basis for maintenance.”
Bassey “What the committee submitted to the Appropriation Committee in the 2021 fiscal year is the N38bn proposed for it by the executive which cannot cover up to one quarter of the entire length of deplorable roads in the country.
“Unfortunately, despite having the power of appropriation, we cannot as a committee jerk up the sum since we are not in a position to carry out the estimation of work to be done on each of the specific portion of the road.
“Doing that without proposals to that effect from the executive, may lead to project insertion or padding as often alleged in the media.”
Scarcity of Day-Old-Chicks Cripple Poultry Farmers in Akwa Ibom
Despite billions of Naira spent on Akwa Prime Hatchery and Poultry Limited by the Executive Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Udom Emmanuel, poultry farmers in the state said they had to order day-old-chicks from outside the state as the 200,000 capacity poultry farm developed specifically to make day-old-chicks and other poultry products available at affordable prices is almost empty at the moment.
The farmers expressed frustration over many challenges they face in the course of bringing day-old-chicks from outside the state. Usually, Ibadan, Enugu and sometimes as far as Kaduna, while the hatchery built and inaugurated in 2016 remains idle.
Mr Ekot Akpan, one of the poultry farmers who spoke with the pressmen said the state had not had it this bad.
Akpan said: “For the 12 years that I have been in poultry farming, this is the first time that poultry farmers have been so harshly affected by both economic and non-economic factors. And, quite unfortunately, nobody is available to offer any explanation.
“Farmers have been left at the whims and caprice of owners of the means of production.
“There seems to be no government regulation of the poultry industry. How, do you explain a situation where you wake up suddenly and the price of a day old chick is selling for N600, a bag of feed goes as high as N6,000.
“And, in a state that government claims to be pursuing agriculture as one of his cardinal programmes.
“For instance, in 2016, the state government said it has constructed an hatchery, and the intention according the government was to ensure availability of day old chicks at affordable price to farmers, but, quite, unfortunately, that effort has not yielded any tangible result.
“Farmers are still getting their day old chicks from Ibadan, Kaduna, and Enugu. So, the question now is where is the hatchery?
“One would have expected that farmers would be buying old chicks at humane prices, but, from all indications they acclaimed hatchery is a ruse. So, which one is the Akwa Prime Hatchery producing,” he said.
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