Nicholas Spiro

Nicholas Spiro is a partner at Lauressa Advisory, a specialist London-based real estate and macroeconomic advisory firm. He is an expert on advanced and emerging economies and a regular commentator on financial and macro-political developments.
Nicholas Spiro
Nicholas Spiro is a partner at Lauressa Advisory, a specialist London-based real estate and macroeconomic advisory firm. He is an expert on advanced and emerging economies and a regular commentator on financial and macro-political developments.

Latest from Nicholas Spiro

The View | Why WeWork’s collapse could be a blessing in disguise for China’s co-working sector

While the fallout from the turmoil at shared office provider WeWork has been severe in China, it will accelerate consolidation in the sector and prompt co-working providers to move towards corporate clients.

12 Nov 2019 - 6:29AM

While the fallout from the turmoil at shared office provider WeWork has been severe in China, it will accelerate consolidation in the sector and prompt co-working providers to move towards corporate clients.

Why WeWork’s collapse could be a blessing in disguise for China’s co-working sector
Macroscope | Why an Elizabeth Warren presidency worries markets more than Donald Trump’s trade war

Despite Trump’s erratic policymaking, investors have done well during his presidency. But uncertainties over a trade deal with China and Trump’s possible impeachment are a reminder that political risk will continue to unsettle markets whoever wins the election.

8 Nov 2019 - 3:45AM

Despite Trump’s erratic policymaking, investors have done well during his presidency. But uncertainties over a trade deal with China and Trump’s possible impeachment are a reminder that political risk will continue to unsettle markets whoever wins the election.

Why an Elizabeth Warren presidency worries markets more than Donald Trump’s trade war
The View | Hong Kong protests: could a financial crisis be the jolt that brings the unrest to a halt?

While Hong Kong’s financial markets have remained resilient, a run on a major bank or a serious challenge to the currency peg might push Beijing, the Hong Kong government, protesters and ordinary Hongkongers to seek a resolution.

5 Nov 2019 - 6:47AM

While Hong Kong’s financial markets have remained resilient, a run on a major bank or a serious challenge to the currency peg might push Beijing, the Hong Kong government, protesters and ordinary Hongkongers to seek a resolution.

Hong Kong protests: could a financial crisis be the jolt that brings the unrest to a halt?
Macroscope | The Fed thinks the US-China trade war and Brexit risks have receded. Investors should avoid making the same mistake

Investors have shown a tendency to swing between extremes, reacting to news with excessive bearishness or bullishness. But it’s jarring to see the Fed do the same, ruling out more rate cuts because of fleeting progress in Brexit and the US-China trade deal.

1 Nov 2019 - 3:41AM

Investors have shown a tendency to swing between extremes, reacting to news with excessive bearishness or bullishness. But it’s jarring to see the Fed do the same, ruling out more rate cuts because of fleeting progress in Brexit and the US-China trade deal.

The Fed thinks the US-China trade war and Brexit risks have receded. Investors should avoid making the same mistake
The View | Hong Kong protests are pushing the city’s commercial property market off a cliff, and sellers are in denial

Transaction volumes in Hong Kong’s commercial real estate investment sector have plunged in the third quarter, with mainland investors making no purchases. The protests have accentuated vulnerabilities in the sector, such as low rental yields.

29 Oct 2019 - 11:12AM

Transaction volumes in Hong Kong’s commercial real estate investment sector have plunged in the third quarter, with mainland investors making no purchases. The protests have accentuated vulnerabilities in the sector, such as low rental yields.

Hong Kong protests are pushing the city’s commercial property market off a cliff, and sellers are in denial
Macroscope | Uncertainties over US-China trade war, Brexit, Trump impeachment and a global recession leave investors deeply confused

Stock markets continue to show signs of bullishness, yet bond markets struggle and money is flowing into ‘safe haven’ assets. This shows how events weighing on confidence are of a political nature, pushing investors out of their comfort zone.

24 Oct 2019 - 10:47PM

Stock markets continue to show signs of bullishness, yet bond markets struggle and money is flowing into ‘safe haven’ assets. This shows how events weighing on confidence are of a political nature, pushing investors out of their comfort zone.

Uncertainties over US-China trade war, Brexit, Trump impeachment and a global recession leave investors deeply confused
Macroscope | Proposed US-China trade and Brexit deals have spurred investor excitement – and once again, it’s premature

Investors can’t help but get excited hearing that deals resolving Brexit and the US-China trade war are on the cards. However, that optimism misses the frail foundations both deals rest on, and that neither is the first of its kind to fail.

17 Oct 2019 - 9:00PM

Investors can’t help but get excited hearing that deals resolving Brexit and the US-China trade war are on the cards. However, that optimism misses the frail foundations both deals rest on, and that neither is the first of its kind to fail.

Proposed US-China trade and Brexit deals have spurred investor excitement – and once again, it’s premature
The View | Even after four months of protests, don’t expect Hong Kong’s housing and office markets to crash any time soon

House prices and office rents are sliding, and Hong Kong is almost certainly in recession. But an undersupply of residential and office space should provide a strong counterweight to falling demand – unless Beijing sends in the troops.

15 Oct 2019 - 11:15AM

House prices and office rents are sliding, and Hong Kong is almost certainly in recession. But an undersupply of residential and office space should provide a strong counterweight to falling demand – unless Beijing sends in the troops.

Even after four months of protests, don’t expect Hong Kong’s housing and office markets to crash any time soon
Macroscope | Investors’ loss of confidence in monetary easing comes at a worrying time for the world economy

In Europe and America, central bankers are divided over the need for loose monetary policy. More importantly, market regard for their ability to boost a flagging economy has fallen dramatically, undermining the effectiveness of such policies.

11 Oct 2019 - 4:11AM

In Europe and America, central bankers are divided over the need for loose monetary policy. More importantly, market regard for their ability to boost a flagging economy has fallen dramatically, undermining the effectiveness of such policies.

Investors’ loss of confidence in monetary easing comes at a worrying time for the world economy
The View | Hong Kong’s economy has so far weathered the protests and US-China trade war, but anti-mask law may be the tipping point

Hong Kong is not Argentina – its financial buffers are strong and the damage of the past few months is not permanent. But the mask ban could signal tougher measures to come, undermining confidence at an especially ominous moment.

8 Oct 2019 - 6:34AM

Hong Kong is not Argentina – its financial buffers are strong and the damage of the past few months is not permanent. But the mask ban could signal tougher measures to come, undermining confidence at an especially ominous moment.

Hong Kong’s economy has so far weathered the protests and US-China trade war, but anti-mask law may be the tipping point
Macroscope | The impact of a Trump impeachment would be just too unpredictable for confused markets to cheer it on

Hope that the impeachment inquiry may spur Trump to conclude a trade truce with China remains just that – mere hope. Too many variables are at play, including Beijing’s reaction to a weakened Trump presidency.

4 Oct 2019 - 2:20AM

Hope that the impeachment inquiry may spur Trump to conclude a trade truce with China remains just that – mere hope. Too many variables are at play, including Beijing’s reaction to a weakened Trump presidency.

The impact of a Trump impeachment would be just too unpredictable for confused markets to cheer it on
The View | Exodus from Hong Kong’s prime office districts will continue as protests put economy under more stress

Prime rents in Central fell in the second quarter of 2019, the first drop since 2014, as more businesses leave for Kowloon East and Hong Kong East. In time, however, continuing unrest will undermine confidence in Hong Kong as a financial hub, and the market as a whole will suffer.

1 Oct 2019 - 11:17AM

Prime rents in Central fell in the second quarter of 2019, the first drop since 2014, as more businesses leave for Kowloon East and Hong Kong East. In time, however, continuing unrest will undermine confidence in Hong Kong as a financial hub, and the market as a whole will suffer.

Exodus from Hong Kong’s prime office districts will continue as protests put economy under more stress
Macroscope | US-China trade war and Trump impeachment inquiry are weighing on the global economy, but fears of a recession are unfounded

Wherever one looks, it seems like all the market news is downbeat, but fears of a recession in the US remain overstated. Moreover, with the 2020 election looming, US President Donald Trump may have reason to de-escalate his trade war with China.

27 Sep 2019 - 1:18AM

Wherever one looks, it seems like all the market news is downbeat, but fears of a recession in the US remain overstated. Moreover, with the 2020 election looming, US President Donald Trump may have reason to de-escalate his trade war with China.

US-China trade war and Trump impeachment inquiry are weighing on the global economy, but fears of a recession are unfounded
The View | Worse than Brexit: amid the violent protests, bright spots for Hong Kong’s real estate market are hard to find

Analysts are beginning to see an upside for Britain’s real estate sector despite three years of Brexit chaos. But with violence ongoing and the local government paralysed, such optimism is lacking for Hong Kong’s market.

24 Sep 2019 - 9:21AM

Analysts are beginning to see an upside for Britain’s real estate sector despite three years of Brexit chaos. But with violence ongoing and the local government paralysed, such optimism is lacking for Hong Kong’s market.

Worse than Brexit: amid the violent protests, bright spots for Hong Kong’s real estate market are hard to find
Macroscope | Muted market reaction to Saudi oil attacks underlines investors’ habit to underprice geopolitical risks

Markets have long struggled to assess and price political and geopolitical risks accurately, given our innate reluctance to prepare for worst-case scenarios. This explains, too, the reaction to a potentially disastrous no-deal Brexit.

20 Sep 2019 - 3:36AM

Markets have long struggled to assess and price political and geopolitical risks accurately, given our innate reluctance to prepare for worst-case scenarios. This explains, too, the reaction to a potentially disastrous no-deal Brexit.

Muted market reaction to Saudi oil attacks underlines investors’ habit to underprice geopolitical risks
The View | Hong Kong’s hotel sector is in free fall as violent protests keep tourists from the mainland, and elsewhere, away

In a matter of months, the strong fundamentals of Hong Kong’s tourism industry have been dealt a massive blow. The hotel market is now a proxy for the perceived stability of Asia’s financial hub, and things don’t look good.

17 Sep 2019 - 6:56AM

In a matter of months, the strong fundamentals of Hong Kong’s tourism industry have been dealt a massive blow. The hotel market is now a proxy for the perceived stability of Asia’s financial hub, and things don’t look good.

Hong Kong’s hotel sector is in free fall as violent protests keep tourists from the mainland, and elsewhere, away
Macroscope | Central banks like the Fed and the ECB can’t save the global economy when governments refuse to play their part

Fed and ECB actions after the 2008 crisis have been crucial, but they have reached the limits of what they can achieve. If governments like Germany won’t stimulate and Italy won’t reform, it’s unreasonable to expect more from central banks.

13 Sep 2019 - 4:18AM

Fed and ECB actions after the 2008 crisis have been crucial, but they have reached the limits of what they can achieve. If governments like Germany won’t stimulate and Italy won’t reform, it’s unreasonable to expect more from central banks.

Central banks like the Fed and the ECB can’t save the global economy when governments refuse to play their part
The View | Markets remain confident about Hong Kong’s future, even though poor leadership is undermining it

Despite the unrest and Fitch’s downgrade, markets do not believe Hong Kong’s special status as a financial centre is in danger. Rather, it is Hong Kong’s own government that has done more to sow uncertainty about the city’s stability.

10 Sep 2019 - 7:15AM

Despite the unrest and Fitch’s downgrade, markets do not believe Hong Kong’s special status as a financial centre is in danger. Rather, it is Hong Kong’s own government that has done more to sow uncertainty about the city’s stability.

Markets remain confident about Hong Kong’s future, even though poor leadership is undermining it
Macroscope | US consumer confidence shines amid the gathering economic gloom. But for how long?

With the latest manufacturing data apparently supporting growing market pessimism as the US-China trade war rages on, US consumer sentiment has become the single most important factor shaping the global economic outlook.

6 Sep 2019 - 3:29AM

With the latest manufacturing data apparently supporting growing market pessimism as the US-China trade war rages on, US consumer sentiment has become the single most important factor shaping the global economic outlook.

US consumer confidence shines amid the gathering economic gloom. But for how long?
The View | Amid protest violence and dire warnings for Hong Kong’s economy, mainland property investors provide some hope

Behind the – deservedly – gloomy headlines about the economy, mainlanders are still bullish on Hong Kong. This is especially true of office property around Central, and suggests the city is still crucial to China’s plans.

3 Sep 2019 - 11:17AM

Behind the – deservedly – gloomy headlines about the economy, mainlanders are still bullish on Hong Kong. This is especially true of office property around Central, and suggests the city is still crucial to China’s plans.

Amid protest violence and dire warnings for Hong Kong’s economy, mainland property investors provide some hope
Macroscope | For investors, Donald Trump’s tweets just sow confusion. In the trade war with China, they undermine his own position

The president’s Twitter missives make news, but their erratic musings also make for confusion about US policy direction. Even his negotiating partners in Beijing are starting to realise that such ramblings reveal he won’t honour any deal.

30 Aug 2019 - 4:50AM

The president’s Twitter missives make news, but their erratic musings also make for confusion about US policy direction. Even his negotiating partners in Beijing are starting to realise that such ramblings reveal he won’t honour any deal.

For investors, Donald Trump’s tweets just sow confusion. In the trade war with China, they undermine his own position
The View | Why Hong Kong home and office costs are likely to weather political crisis and trade war

A prolonged recession could cause heavier strain on the home and office markets but, for now, they are likely to weather the storm due to a supply squeeze.

19 Aug 2019 - 10:31PM

A prolonged recession could cause heavier strain on the home and office markets but, for now, they are likely to weather the storm due to a supply squeeze.

Why Hong Kong home and office costs are likely to weather political crisis and trade war
Macroscope | Easy money is losing its magic as global recession fears spread

The Fed’s abrupt reversal of a rate hike cycle has succeeded in ramping up anxiety about a global slowdown. In the current climate of fear, bad news for the economy might no longer be good news for the markets.

16 Aug 2019 - 4:55AM

The Fed’s abrupt reversal of a rate hike cycle has succeeded in ramping up anxiety about a global slowdown. In the current climate of fear, bad news for the economy might no longer be good news for the markets.

Easy money is losing its magic as global recession fears spread
The View | Cities in trouble: London will weather a no-deal Brexit but can Hong Kong survive its political crisis?

While commercial property investment in both cities has fallen sharply, the challenges facing Asia’s premier financial hub are more severe than those affecting London. In Hong Kong, the anti-government protests have only just begun.

12 Aug 2019 - 10:28PM

While commercial property investment in both cities has fallen sharply, the challenges facing Asia’s premier financial hub are more severe than those affecting London. In Hong Kong, the anti-government protests have only just begun.

Cities in trouble: London will weather a no-deal Brexit but can Hong Kong survive its political crisis?
Macroscope | Trade war escalation leaves markets shaken, but a meltdown is not on the cards

Trump’s latest tariffs and the yuan’s slide this week are forcing investors to take the threat of a prolonged stand-off more seriously, but a dovish Fed and growing confidence in China’s ability to manage its currency are among the reasons we are still some way from a fully fledged crisis.

9 Aug 2019 - 2:21AM

Trump’s latest tariffs and the yuan’s slide this week are forcing investors to take the threat of a prolonged stand-off more seriously, but a dovish Fed and growing confidence in China’s ability to manage its currency are among the reasons we are still some way from a fully fledged crisis.

Trade war escalation leaves markets shaken, but a meltdown is not on the cards
Macroscope | Trade war, rate cuts, huge deficits – Trump gets away with it thanks to the US’ ‘exorbitant privilege’

Globalised finance means capital flows into the US in times of uncertainty, even when the US causes that instability. Investors should question whether the US’ budget-busting is sustainable.

2 Aug 2019 - 3:34AM

Globalised finance means capital flows into the US in times of uncertainty, even when the US causes that instability. Investors should question whether the US’ budget-busting is sustainable.

Trade war, rate cuts, huge deficits – Trump gets away with it thanks to the US’ ‘exorbitant privilege’
The View | As protests rock Hong Kong, money may flee to safer and cheaper property markets

For Hong Kong property investors, acute threats to the city’s stability are increasing the appeal of cities like Vancouver and Sydney, where house prices have been brought under control.

30 Jul 2019 - 6:27AM

For Hong Kong property investors, acute threats to the city’s stability are increasing the appeal of cities like Vancouver and Sydney, where house prices have been brought under control.

As protests rock Hong Kong, money may flee to safer and cheaper property markets
Macroscope | Emerging markets are pulling in funds, but is investor optimism justified?

While a fund manager survey shows emerging markets are the most popular region for equity investors, growth in these countries is contracting. China’s ballooning debt-to-GDP ratio amid the trade war will hit emerging Asia hard.

26 Jul 2019 - 6:02AM

While a fund manager survey shows emerging markets are the most popular region for equity investors, growth in these countries is contracting. China’s ballooning debt-to-GDP ratio amid the trade war will hit emerging Asia hard.

Emerging markets are pulling in funds, but is investor optimism justified?
The View | Shanghai’s real estate market is bucking trends in global property sales and China’s own economy

Slowing economic conditions are working to the advantage of China’s financial hub, as risk-averse investors are drawn to familiar locations and Shanghai benefits from a glut of decentralised stock.

23 Jul 2019 - 6:21AM

Slowing economic conditions are working to the advantage of China’s financial hub, as risk-averse investors are drawn to familiar locations and Shanghai benefits from a glut of decentralised stock.

Shanghai’s real estate market is bucking trends in global property sales and China’s own economy
Macroscope | If Trump has a currency war in mind as part of his presidential campaign, he’s not likely to get very far

Trump’s comments on the US dollar and the Federal Reserve have sparked fears that he might take steps to weaken the American currency. However, neither the Fed nor other central banks, such as in the euro zone and Japan, are likely to cooperate.

19 Jul 2019 - 4:02AM

Trump’s comments on the US dollar and the Federal Reserve have sparked fears that he might take steps to weaken the American currency. However, neither the Fed nor other central banks, such as in the euro zone and Japan, are likely to cooperate.

If Trump has a currency war in mind as part of his presidential campaign, he’s not likely to get very far