Stock Market Performance Round-up: Dancing to the Same Tune

By: Prieur du Plessis | Mon, Jul 21, 2008
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Factoring in last week's stock market rebound, I have put together a table of global stock markets' performances over various measurement periods and in both local currency and US dollar terms. The numbers speak for themselves and can best be summarized in a single sentence: Despite the variation in the economic impact of the credit crunch, stock markets have by and large been dancing to the same tune.

The Wall Street "leash effect" remained paramount, and stock market (as opposed to economic) decoupling nothing more than a myth.

As a result of the slide of the US dollar over the different measurement periods, the performance of those stock markets where the local currency strengthened against the greenback (pretty much all markets) obviously look better once expressed in US dollar terms (see bottom table).

We are possibly in the midst of a tradeable rally, but I do not know (and neither does anyone else) whether last week marked a major bear market low. In the words of David Fuller (Fullermoney): "The markets will provide the answers in their own good time."

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Prieur du Plessis

Author: Prieur du Plessis

Dr Prieur du Plessis
investmentpostcards.com

Dr Prieur du Plessis

With 25 years' experience in investment research and portfolio management, Dr Prieur du Plessis is one of the most experienced and well-known investment professionals in South Africa. More than 1 000 of his articles on investment-related topics have been published in various regular newspaper, journal and Internet columns. He also published a book, Financial Basics: Investment, in 2002.

He holds the following degrees: BSc (Quantity Surveying) (Cape Town), HonsB (B & A) (cum laude) (Stellenbosch), MBA (cum laude) (Stellenbosch); and DBA (Doctor of Financial Management) (Stellenbosch).

Prieur is chairman of the Plexus group of companies, which he founded in 1995. Previously he was general manager: portfolio management at Sanlam, responsible for the management of investment portfolios with total assets in excess of $5 billion.

Plexus is a pioneer in the mutual fund industry and has achieved a number of firsts under Prieur's leadership. These include the authoritative Plexus Survey, a quarterly analysis of the consistency of the performance of unit trust management companies, the Plexus Offshore Survey, the Plexus Unit Trust Indices, and the PlexCrown Fund Ratings.

Plexus is the South African partner of John Mauldin, American author of the most widely distributed investment newsletter in the world, and also has an exclusive licensing agreement with California-based Research Affiliates for managing and distributing its enhanced Fundamental Index™ methodology in the Pan-African area.

In 2001 Prieur received the Santam/AHI Business Leader of the Year award for corporate leadership, business acumen and entrepreneurial flair. He was also profiled in the book South Africa's Leading Managers (2006). Plexus received the AHI/Old Mutual Enterprise of the Year award in 1997 and was also included in the book South Africa's Most Promising Companies (2005).

Prieur is 52 years old and lives with his wife, TV producer and presenter Isabel Verwey, and two children in Welgemoed, Cape Town. His recreational activities include long-distance running, motor cycling and reading. He belongs to the Cape Town Club, Johannesburg Country Club, Gordon's Bay Yacht Club and Swiss Social & Sports Club.

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