Market Report

RCEP: The consequences of the world’s largest free trade zone

The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), the largest free-trade zone in the world, is emerging in the Asia-Pacific region. On the 15th November 2020, the heads of state and government of China, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand signed the agreement with ASEAN, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, which includes Thailand, Vietnam and…

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Ring-fenced banks: necessary insurance or an unnecessary cost?

In the years following the 2008 financial crisis, regulation of the UK banking sector has substantially increased. One of the most prominent policies has been the mandated ring-fencing of banks, which since 2019, has placed 1.2 trillion GBP of core deposits in ring-fenced bodies (RBFs). RFBs disconnect retail banking operations from investment banking activities, thus…

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A (Coronavirus) Shot at Salvation: how the development of a COVID-19 vaccine could revolutionise Big Pharma

Drug makers have long been viewed unfavourably by the public, with the pharmaceutical industry being rated the most hated industry in the US according to a 2019 poll by Gallup, an analytics company known for public opinion polls (see Figure 1). Historically, companies have been blamed for charging extortionate prices for life-changing drugs, as well…

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Introducing Amazon Pharmacy: a bitter pill for pharmacists.

Amazon has been one of the most innovative and disruptive companies of this century, with astonishing success in almost all areas of online retail. Originally a bookselling company, Amazon’s product portfolio is extensive and its new ambitious plan to expand into healthcare and the prescription drug market represents the largest and most prominent unchartered territory…

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Can African Nations avoid mass debt defaults?

COVID-19 has spared few countries from its effects, both in terms of health and economically. Despite African nations fairing relatively well in terms of deaths and case numbers compared to countries like of the UK, the continent has not escaped the economic difficulties induced by the pandemic. With falling commodity prices, reduced international trade and…

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Vietnam: Asia’s Newest Economic Powerhouse?

Foreign investors’ attraction to Vietnam has been rising throughout 2020. The region has transformed into an attractive location for foreign companies to source products from, as well as relocate their factories to, with companies such as Apple, Hanwha, Foxconn and Nintendo being some of the biggest names to do so. Attractive government policies and the…

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A Basic Guide To Stocks: Part 1

 Monopoly Have you ever played Monopoly? When I was younger, I played often enough that the complex strategic nuances of this apparently innocent family game soon became evident. To win Monopoly, you have to exploit people’s misconceptions of property value. The navy blue properties, at the end of the board cycle, are the most expensive…

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What does a second lockdown mean for the UK housing market?

The performance of the UK housing market over the course of 2020 has been little short of remarkable. The first lockdown released a tide of demand for those re-evaluating their lifestyle and housing needs, the opposite of what was expected at the time. The second lockdown started on the 5th of November and will last…

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ESG in the Construction Sector

The Greater London Authority (GLA) moved from Foster’s City Hall to Siemens’ ‘The Crystal’ last month. The eco-friendly alternative features triple-glazed windows, rainwater harvesting capabilities and roof-mounted solar panels that are responsible for 20% of its electricity generation. The structure facilitates ubiquitous natural light which reduces the need for artificial sources. Whilst this move is…

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An Insight into House Pricing During COVID-19

The summer’s housing boom continues as forecasts for the UK property market become increasingly positive. In August, house prices increased at their fastest rate in 16 years, despite the economy entering a recession. There was a record high of 84,190 transactions compared with 82,830 in February, the month before lockdown. Areas such as Edinburgh, Liverpool…

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