On 19th December, Scottish Finance Secretary Shona Robison unveiled the Scottish Government’s 2024/25 budget plans in what she described as turbulent circumstances: a turbulence which the SNP opted to largely direct towards Scotland’s high earners in the form of income tax hikes.
Given the stock and bond market volatility, it’s hard to know what the starting point for equity valuations and rates as we enter 2024. At the beginning of the year, we said that volatility and geopolitical uncertainty will persist. Stocks and bonds were nearly flat by the end of October and are now up 10% and 5% respectively in just thirty days.
Challenging market environments can create situations which can lead to some biased decision making. Recognising this will prevent investors from making decisions that could negatively impact their long-term investment performance.
The reason long-term investors like Warren Buffett can consistently earn profits and outperform is because of market inefficiencies. These inefficiencies are inevitable because markets are composed of human beings, who no matter how disciplined, will often make financial decisions that consist of behavioural biases causing them to act on emotion.