What a great quarter that was

We couldn’t have predicted how far things would change in 2020, especially given the optimism that abounded during January. However, despite Covid-19 the Lens believes that come the year-end, the year will have created some positive memories.

Buoyant market outlooks at the start of the year gave way to the turmoil of Covid-19 but we should note that Q2 2020 was, in fact, an incredible quarter for investment markets. The stock rally was even nicknamed ‘The Terminator Rally’ by the Financial Times, as – like the cyborg in the film – nothing seemed to be able to stop it.

During the second quarter CAMRADATA saw an increase in investor search activity as sentiment changed and opportunities arose. The number of asset-manager and asset-class searches rose substantially, together with a huge increase in the number of performance analysis reports and manager research documents.

In addition, CAMRADATA also carried out seventeen Assisted Searches during Q2 2020 on behalf of pension schemes, insurance firms and investment consultants. Assets involved totalled around £1.2bn and this was across a wide range of allocations, including global tactical asset allocation, UK equities, distressed debt, index bonds, global equities, multi-asset, infrastructure, real estate, global credit, alternatives. There was also a number of asset-class searches where ESG qualities were the focus.

Whilst search activity remains strong, the short-term investment outlook is still obviously highly uncertain. This is especially in the short-term because of the possibility of a second wave of infections. There is also the economic pain as support is slowly withdrawn, and political risks due to the forthcoming US elections and instability in Hong Kong – not to mention Brexit and US-China relations.

Yet at The Lens we feel there will be many positive stories written about this period. We won’t remember what we did in April 2017, May 2018 or even June 2019. But April to June 2020 may be recalled as a particularly special quarter.