Monday morning briefing: Retail sales are still weak

Fund managers are less optimistic. Being wealthy is more than just having a lot of money. And much more in this week’s briefing.

Economic/industry news 

Canada’s inflation rate was 2.4% in January: Inflation rises 2.4% amid higher gas prices; core measures decelerate

Will ESG indices become more popular than traditional indexes?: MSCI says ESG indexes will be bigger than traditional gauges

Which banks have the most female directors?: Top 12 big banks for female board membership

Looking at the performance of low-volatility ETFs: Are low-volatility equity ETFs performing as planned?

The changing nature of financial advice: McKinsey on wealth management – the “Netflixing” of advice

Chart of the week

Canadian retail sales grew 1.6% in 2019, the weakest pace since 2009. This chart demonstrates the clear slowdown in retail sales across the Canadian economy over the past year. This signals weakness in personal spending. Rising debt, higher insolvencies and pressure on household finances in response to higher prices for staples, such as food, are weighing on Canadians’ pocketbooks. Do you believe Canadian retail sales will weaken further? Let us know what you think.
Used with permission of Bloomberg Finance L.P.

News and notes (U.S.)

Analyzing Q4 filingsQ4 2019 filings insights

Hedge funds rose 8.67% last year: Eurekahedge Hedge Fund Index up 8.67 per cent in 2019

Handing out 2019 PE awards: 2019 Pitchbook private equity awards

Morgan Stanley to acquire E*TradeMorgan Stanley dives deeper into retail with E*Trade deal

Franklin Templeton to purchase Legg MasonFranklin Templeton buying Legg Mason for US$4.5 billion

Mutual fund sales and performance over the past two weeksMutual funds scorecard: February 18 edition

Michael Milken has been pardoned: Michael Milken pardoned by President Trump

News and notes (Canada)

Restrictions proposed on DSC back-end fees: DSC ban coming in mid-2022

Dynamic launched new ETFs: Dynamic launches two active ETFs

A new designation for financial advisorsAdvocis launches new advisor designation

Fairstone Financial to be acquired by Duo Bank: Duo Bank buying Fairstone Financial

On the pulse – New frontiers in fintech

Fintech firms to watch in 2020: The Forbes Fintech 50: The most innovative fintech companies in 2020

Retail banking trends for the upcoming year: Top 10 retail banking trends and priorities for 2020

Why big tech could enter financial services: The role of big tech in financial services

What may be in store for bank branches: The future of the branch experience

Developing a strategy for data and AI: EU sets out plans for big data and AI

OTPP invests in cybersecurity firm: Ontario Teachers’ buys stake in cybersecurity firm, Caisse portfolio companies make acquisitions

AI financial planning firm receives investment: Financial planning startup scores seed funding

High-net-worth topics

Being wealthy is more than just having a lot of money: Beyond money: 4 ways advisors help clients achieve personal wealth

Insuring Australia’s high-net-worth against cybercrimes: AIG puts cyber into new policy for high net worth families

Polls & surveys – What financials are saying

Fund managers are less optimistic (BofA): Fund managers’ bullishness tapers off in February: BofA survey

Number of RRSP contributors rises in 2018 (Statistics Canada): RRSP contributions are up, but their popularity with taxpayers is down

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