by Marshall Blume
Asset management is equal parts art and science. It’s also constantly evolving. Done correctly, managers continually weigh new variables and the latest information. Here at PMA, we keep our eyes on a wide range of data sets as we look to generate solid returns while also living up to the “prudent” part of our name. Recently, we’ve had our eyes trained very carefully on both US trade and current account numbers and the policies driving them, in part because of inconsistencies in those policies, but more importantly to inform our assessment of risk across portfolios.
Let’s begin with what’s been in the news: the growing US trade war with China. President Trump has demanded that China reduce its $187 billion trade surplus with the US by $100 billion. The US trade deficit with China is one of the most visible parts of the iceberg composed of all our financial interactions with other countries. Perhaps that is the reason it has captured President Trump’s attention.