Looking backwards and forwards

While last week The Lens looked forward to what the new decade might bring, this week The Lens is in a slightly more reflective mood. The end of the 2010s provides an opportunity to look back on the significant changes that have taken place in the asset management industry over the last 10 years.

Over the decade – and particularly towards the end of it – perhaps the most major trend observed was the focus on integrating ESG factors into investment processes. With the issue of climate change becoming an ever more urgent issue The Lens can only predict the rise of ESG will continue this decade.

We have also seen significant fee compression across the industry over the last 10 years partly driven by the rise of index funds and passive investing, combined with the increasing role of technology. Lower fees have placed increased pressures on both asset managers and asset servicers leading to several mergers and acquisitions throughout the decade. It will be interesting to see if this trend continues as we move into the 2020s.

Focusing more on stock markets the decade has seen record highs across many global stock markets driven by the longest bull run in history. This has been despite rising geopolitical tensions, Brexit and China’s economic slowdown which have dominated the news in the latter part of the previous decade. The forecast for the next decade is foggy with potential recessionary headwinds on the horizon. The Lens looks forward to seeing how the industry responds to the challenges that lie ahead.

What will ‘the Roaring 2020s’ bring us? Has the Brexit dust settled? (The Lens doubts it). All The Lens does know, is that you will all be kept up to date every step of the way because The Lens is always watching and listening to report back…ready, set, go!