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Beware of the US-Centric Inflation Hysteria?

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Earlier this week, Bloomberg reported on how an unexpected jump in US wages has given financial markets a new reason to worry that higher inflation may be here to stay. The article notes that some economists say the central bank is understating a significant risk: “Fed officials do not believe that wage pressures can exist in a world with 6% unemployment, so they are in full denial,” Stephen Stanley, chief economist at Amherst Pierpont Securities LLC, said in a note. “A substantial pickup in wage gains would be the quickest path to turning a ‘transitory’ inflation blip into a persistent upturn.” Indeed, a substantial pickup in wage gains would be the quickest path to turning a ‘transitory’ inflation blip into a persistent upturn. Why? Because higher wages allow people to spend more on goods and services and could cause a wage-price spiral similar to what we saw in the 1970s: The idea is that higher wages spur more spending growth that strains production capacity and drives up b

OTPP's Olivia Steedman on Investing in New Frontiers

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Barbara Shecter of the National Post reports on how Olivia Steedman is leading OTPP to new frontiers of tech investing:  Olivia Steedman chuckles when she thinks about the first tech investment she made for the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan. Now the senior managing director of the pension’s ambitious innovation investment platform, in 2017 Steedman was still part of the team that had built Teachers’ into a major force in infrastructure. The field was getting crowded, though, as others had caught on to the value in the asset class, causing return compression and forcing them to adjust their strategy. “What we decided to do was to take on earlier stage infrastructure risk, kind of like when you’re in equities and you go to venture, you just move a little bit earlier, which for infrastructure meant taking on construction risk and development risk,” Steedman recalled in a recent interview. In early 2018, they invested in Stem Inc., an artificial intelligence-powered energy s

Meet AIMCo's Chief Investment Strategy Officer

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Amanda White of Top1000Funds interviewed AIMCo's Chief Investment Strategy Officer, Amit Prakash, on how the investment manager is enhancing its top down strategy and adding valuable investment insights to clients: In October 2020 AIMCo, the C$118 billion Canadian fund appointed its first chief investment strategy officer splitting the investment function between the top down strategy and bottom up implementation responsibilities. Amanda White talks to Amit Prakash about how the new function will add valuable investment insights to clients. While AIMCO formerly created this position late last year the underpinnings and drivers of the investment strategy function at AIMCo have been present for a long time. With the appointment of Amit Prakash as the first chief investment strategy officer they are now present in a focused and deliberate manner. The headline objective of the function is to move the organisation into better alignment with its clients’ investment objectives