December 7, 2023

Manager Comments – 30 November 2023

This summary provides an overview of the key points in the Manager Report for 2023 Q3, covering global and regional economic trends, market performance, and insights into specific regions and sectors.

General Trends:

Equities: Global shares fell in October due to concerns about prolonged higher US interest rates and geopolitical tensions in the Middle East.

Bonds: Yields rose sharply, impacting bonds negatively.

Gold: Rose as investors sought safe haven assets amid market uncertainties.

South Africa:

Private sector activity grew in August, indicating a turnaround.

Business costs rose at the slowest rate since January, supporting a slower increase in output charges.

Challenges include power cuts, weak currency, and supply disruptions.


Real GDP growth rose to 4.6% in 2022.

Inflation averaged 6.1% in 2022, driven by global commodity prices.

Projected GDP growth for 2023 and 2024, with challenges including a higher import bill and lower SACU revenue.


Equities fell in October due to delayed expectations of the end to the Federal Reserve’s tighter policy.

US economy expanded at 4.9% in Q3 2023, driven by strong consumer spending.

Inflation remains elevated, and uncertainty prompts Fed Chair Powell to suggest further tightening.


Eurozone shares fell in August, with energy and real estate the only positive sectors.

Annual inflation at 5.3% in August, stable from July.

Economic downturn signaled by flash HCOB PMI, contributing to debates on ECB’s next move.


UK equities fell, especially impacting banks and domestically focused sectors.

Market interest rates rose, impacting consumer discretionary sectors.

Concerns about long-term inflation battle amid economic slowdown.


Japanese equity market declined, benefiting financial stocks.

US and JGB yields rose, impacting the Bank of Japan’s policy.

Mixed corporate earnings with weakness in technology but positive sentiment from domestic-oriented companies.

Asia (ex Japan):

Equities weaker due to rising interest rates and geopolitical concerns.

South Korea, Indonesia, and the Philippines among the weakest markets.

Chinese shares fell amid economic slowdown and real estate debt crisis.

Emerging Markets:

EM equities lagged, with Turkey as the biggest underperformer.

Brazil, Thailand, and India marginally outperformed.

Concerns over inflation, conflict, and weaker currencies impacted various markets.

Global Bonds:

Prevailing narrative of expected high-interest rates drove bond markets.

US curve steepened; European rates outperformed.

ECB kept rates stable, and the Bank of Japan made minor tweaks to its policy.


S&P GSCI Index fell, with precious metals performing well.

Gold prices rose due to Middle East conflict.

Energy component saw natural gas rise but declines in crude oil and other products.

Agriculture gained, while industrial metals had mixed performance.