Monthly markets review - January 2015
A look back at markets in January 2015, which saw the arrival of eurozone quantitative easing and a disappointing earnings season in the US.
- Global equities as measured by the MSCI World index registered negative returns in January in dollar terms, largely due to weaker performance from US equities. Commodity prices continued to fall with Brent crude oil dropping below $50/barrel.
- US equities posted negative returns amid a downbeat fourth quarter earnings season, with many companies citing concerns over the impact of the strong dollar.
- Eurozone and UK equities were supported by the European Central Bank’s (ECB) announcement of a programme to purchase sovereign bonds which exceeded market expectations. Eurozone equities, in particular, gained strongly. Swiss shares experienced turbulence as the central bank dropped the franc’s peg to the euro.
- Japanese equities posted a small positive return. Employment figures showed improvement but inflation data was below expectations, largely due to the lower oil price.
- Emerging markets made modest dollar-denominated gains. India was the best performing market as the central bank made a surprise rate cut. China posted positive returns. Fourth quarter GDP was slightly stronger than forecast at 7.3%.
Important information: The views and opinions contained herein are those of the author(s) on this page, and may not necessarily represent views expressed or reflected in other Schroders communications, strategies or funds. This article is intended to be for information purposes only and it is not intended as promotional material in any respect. The material is not intended as an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial instrument. The material is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, accounting, legal or tax advice, or investment recommendations. Information herein is believed to be reliable but Schroders does not warrant its completeness or accuracy. No responsibility can be accepted for errors of fact or opinion. Reliance should not be placed on the views and information in the document when taking individual investment and/or strategic decisions. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future results, prices of shares and the income from them may fall as well as rise and investors may not get back the amount originally invested. Issued by Schroder Investment Management Limited, 31 Gresham Street, London EC2V 7QA, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. For your security, communications may be taped or monitored.