Are you where you need to be?

The last twelve months have seen equity market valuations rise and bond yields decrease against a backdrop of political surprises. There is no magic crystal ball – but as investors, we are constantly required to ask ourselves: ‘is my portfolio best positioned for the future?’.

Manage risks, not returns

It was the Dean of Wall Street, Benjamin Graham, who very famously said:

The essence of investment management is the management of risks, not the management of returns.”

As we prepare to host our clients and friends at next week’s Annual Investment Summit, this quote continues to strike a chord.

The reversal of the direction of monetary policy

We’ve witnessed in recent months the tentative beginnings of the reversal of the direction of monetary policy (starting with the US Federal Reserve, then the European Central Bank and the Bank of England). All indications are that central banks will pursue a very shallow path to increasing interest rates. At the same time, we are living in a very low-return world whilst being faced with valuations across many risk assets at very elevated levels. It will take deft risk management to generate returns in this environment.

Unchartered territory

Longevity, demographics and regulatory reform

At the same time, the ability for institutional investors to tolerate investment risk has been on a downward trend for some time. Longevity, demographics and regulatory reform are forcing investors to look at their portfolios through alternative risk lenses, including cashflow certainty as well as environmental, social and governance (ESG) risk factors.

Political developments

As if these investment issues weren’t enough, we remain in uncharted political territory across the globe. From the election of Donald Trump as US president exactly one year ago today, to the more recent Catalonian independence – political headlines have dominated newsflow for some time now.

As such, we’re delighted to announce that the Rt Hon. the Lord Hague of Richmond, former UK Foreign Secretary, will be joining us as our keynote speaker next week. He will be exploring the changing political paradigms we face today and discussing how politicians can adapt whilst delivering security and prosperity.

Is your portfolio best positioned for the future?

Make sure you are where you need to be

At this year’s event, we will review how to secure investors’ financial needs, whatever the future holds. Following our successful Investment Update Meeting in June, the summit will be hosted at The Institution of Engineering and Technology’s London headquarters, Savoy Place.

The day will kick off with a keynote address from Professor Danielle George, MBE. Danielle will share her thoughts on the developments that global investors should be thinking of when investing for the future, with a focus on FinTech, disruption and artificial intelligence.

We will then hear from Russell Investments experts about the state of play in today’s markets, and how investors can translate these views into investment decisions. From cashflow-driven investing and multi-asset credit to modern portfolio construction and ESG integration, Russell Investments’ Annual Investment Summit will explore today’s investment options and ask investors – ‘are you where you need to be?’.

Watch this space

Keep up to date and register your interest

Following a fantastic response, the event is now fully booked. But don’t worry, we will be writing a series of blogs showcasing the best of the Annual Investment Summit between next week and the new year to keep you up-to-date with the latest insights from Russell Investments.

Hear from Andrew Pease, David Vickers, Will Pearce, Adam Smears, James Mitchell, Van Luu, myself and many more.

To register your interest in the 2019 Annual Investment Summit, please email