Investment management consultant MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE considers the potential for the Chinese Communist Party to deploy Bitcoin and digital currency as a destabilizing force against the US - and the rest of the world.

Could china use cryptocurrency as a financial weapon
Could china use cryptocurrency as a financial weapon

Just as Bitcoin was hovering around US$56,000 over 6–8 April, before climbing back to over US$64,000 a week later, Trump loyalist and crypto investor Peter Thiel was addressing the members of the Richard Nixon Foundation at a virtual event.

Thiel was joined by former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former US National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien. The conversation between Thiel, who has frequently criticized American…


Investment management consultant MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE discovers how the world’s biggest Bitcoin exchange courted Wall Street money and betrayed the principles of cryptocurrency.

Coinbase and the betrayal of cryptocurrency
Coinbase and the betrayal of cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase has been offered to the public through a direct listing on the US tech index Nasdaq with a valuation of US$76bn (US$99bn including options and stock-based awards).

The valuation, which surprises some commentators, has been taken by many industry players as another confirmation that the more crypto goes mainstream, the greater the confidence investors have in it. Others see in this “going mainstream” only a betrayal of the underlying principles of cryptocurrency.

As Bitcoin prices…


Investment management consultant MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE considers whether the miracle rise in UK house prices during the COVID-19 pandemic is truly sustainable following the withdrawal of the furlough schemes and the stamp duty relief.

Matthew Feargrieve asks if UK property market will crash
Matthew Feargrieve asks if UK property market will crash

The estate agent hype is as shameless as the price rises are astounding.

Property prices are up considerably on 2020 and 2019 figures, and agents are reporting the busiest first calendar quarter in years, with a 50 per cent increase in transactions in February compared to the same time last year. …


Investment management consultant MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE explains why yields on government bonds are set to rise further, despite the Fed’s renewed commitment this week to buying US Treasury bonds.

Matthew Feargrieve explains why bond yields will continue to rise
Matthew Feargrieve explains why bond yields will continue to rise

No surprises at this week’s meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC). The Fed is committed to doing — or, at least, committed to being seen to be doing — everything it takes to support the post-pandemic US economic recovery.

So interest rates are to remain on the floor until at least 2023; and fiscal stimulus (on a massive scale) has been accounted for, factored in, allowances made.

So goes the…


Investment management consultant MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE explains the market dynamics pushing bond yields higher, and suggests some protective measures for your investment portfolio.

At its meeting on 17 March, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) confirmed that interest rates in the US would remain at zero. There was no surprise here; it was widely anticipated that the Fed would remain committed to its policy of supporting the US economy until it is back on its feet. …


MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE examines how the meat industry is applying blockchain technology to the processing of livestock in a way that is being welcomed by animal welfare groups, consumers and investors alike.

Matthew Feargrieve discusses blockchain technology in the meat industry
Matthew Feargrieve discusses blockchain technology in the meat industry

We have been eating animals for thousands of years. Throughout the post-war era, industrialisation and higher disposable incomes in developed nations boosted meat consumption. In under than two decades, however, our increased awareness of environmental damage has thrown a spotlight on the industry which has made its main players squirm.

A report entitled “Livestock’s Long Shadow”, published in 2006 by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, estimated that greenhouse…


MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE explains why the S&P 500 and the STOXX 600 right now make this a good time to invest in European equities and corporate bonds.

A Wall Street trader looks at a monitor showing the stock market index going down because of the coronavirus pandemic
A Wall Street trader looks at a monitor showing the stock market index going down because of the coronavirus pandemic

July 2020

European stock markets are seeing inflows as the coronavirus tightens its grip on the US and the country’s economic woes continue to mount. Whilst May and June saw the S&P 500 recover most of the losses of the crash in March, with the Federal Reserve providing emergency economic stimulus, the attention of markets is now focusing on the possibility that the virus remains uncontrolled in the US for some time to come…


MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE explains why the World Health Organization says Africa must prepare for the worst of COVID19. And why the continent is not prepared for what is coming.

Global map showing COVID19 cases worldwide
Global map showing COVID19 cases worldwide

AS AT 12 MAY 2020 there are around 68,000 known cases of COVID19 in Africa, and 2,340 reported deaths (source: African Arguments). There is currently no model for projecting the extent of COVID19 mortality across the African continent: the continent is too vast, the African nations are too different, and so much is still unknown about the virus. Tragically, when you read this article, these numbers will be much higher.

So it…


As a new report by Eurekahedge reveals further contraction in the European hedge fund industry, MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE explains the failure of Alternative UCITS as a vehicle for truly “alternative” strategies, and why managers in Europe are increasingly looking to the Cayman Islands as a hedge fund domicile.

Graph showing stock market collapse during coronavirus crisis
Graph showing stock market collapse during coronavirus crisis

The financial crisis of 2008 left in its wake a chastened world in which transparency and liquidity were held aloft as sacrosanct. Hedge funds came in for much of the blame, despite being exonerated of any systemic role in the global financial meltdown (remember the German government describing hedge funds as “locusts”?) …


MATTHEW FEARGRIEVE explains five ways in which your pension provider- and your financial adviser- should be communicating with you during the coronavirus lockdown.

A pension pot with pennies in it
A pension pot with pennies in it

In these days of lockdown and self-isolation, pension providers and financial advisers, like all businesses, have to work harder at reaching out to their clients. Especially when your pension fund is suffering losses in the market turmoil. Now is the time for all financial services firms to be thinking of their clients and how to help them understand the financial impact of the coronavirus crisis on their investments.

Here we explain five key things that your pension…

Matthew Feargrieve

Matthew Feargrieve is an investment management consultant with more than twenty years experience of advising fund managers.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store