Nicholas Spiro

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

Macroscope | Why the biggest threat to the stock market rally is the one that no one is talking about

Lacklustre global growth, continued US-China sparring and geopolitical risks over Iran are all potential triggers for a major sell-off, but none appear likely to materialise. Instead, the danger may come from vulnerabilities yet to be identified.

23 Jan 2020 - 10:55PM

Lacklustre global growth, continued US-China sparring and geopolitical risks over Iran are all potential triggers for a major sell-off, but none appear likely to materialise. Instead, the danger may come from vulnerabilities yet to be identified.

Why the biggest threat to the stock market rally is the one that no one is talking about
The View | A property market correction would hit Hong Kong hard, however optimistic the expert forecasts

The governance crisis in Hong Kong shows no sign of ending. The fact remains that office leasing activity has fallen off a cliff and property investors, including those from the mainland, are cautious amid the continuing unrest.

21 Jan 2020 - 10:29AM

The governance crisis in Hong Kong shows no sign of ending. The fact remains that office leasing activity has fallen off a cliff and property investors, including those from the mainland, are cautious amid the continuing unrest.

A property market correction would hit Hong Kong hard, however optimistic the expert forecasts
Macroscope | The US-China trade deal has been signed, the markets are bullish – what could go wrong this time?

Despite the weak world economy and geopolitical stress, market sentiment is strong. But the bulls should be mindful that the US-China trade war has not been fully resolved and markets have become more vulnerable in the past year.

17 Jan 2020 - 4:45AM

Despite the weak world economy and geopolitical stress, market sentiment is strong. But the bulls should be mindful that the US-China trade war has not been fully resolved and markets have become more vulnerable in the past year.

The US-China trade deal has been signed, the markets are bullish – what could go wrong this time?
The View | After romancing Paris, South Korean real estate investors are venturing into Central and Eastern Europe

After Paris benefited from a surge in South Korean commercial property investment, these investors are now looking further afield in Europe, although their enthusiasm might wane as yields contract across the continent.

14 Jan 2020 - 5:04AM

After Paris benefited from a surge in South Korean commercial property investment, these investors are now looking further afield in Europe, although their enthusiasm might wane as yields contract across the continent.

After romancing Paris, South Korean real estate investors are venturing into Central and Eastern Europe
Macroscope | Donald Trump’s erratic actions on Iran should give China pause as it prepares to sign a ‘phase one’ trade deal with the US

The US president’s latest move should make it clear to China – and investors – that his decision-making will be more unpredictable in an election year in which his Democratic opponent is yet to be decided.

10 Jan 2020 - 3:44AM

The US president’s latest move should make it clear to China – and investors – that his decision-making will be more unpredictable in an election year in which his Democratic opponent is yet to be decided.

Donald Trump’s erratic actions on Iran should give China pause as it prepares to sign a ‘phase one’ trade deal with the US
The View | As Hong Kong’s office rental market faces challenging times, decentralisation is the trend to watch

While net take-up of Grade A office space in Hong Kong plummeted 62 per cent last year, the gap between the most expensive and cheapest submarkets means the incentive remains for occupiers to relocate to secondary business districts.

7 Jan 2020 - 11:11AM

While net take-up of Grade A office space in Hong Kong plummeted 62 per cent last year, the gap between the most expensive and cheapest submarkets means the incentive remains for occupiers to relocate to secondary business districts.

As Hong Kong’s office rental market faces challenging times, decentralisation is the trend to watch
The View | Three reasons Asian real estate should continue to attract investors, despite the global slowdown

Although retail property transactions are down globally due to e-commerce, the trade war and Hong Kong’s protests, Asian real estate remains a good investment, especially logistics, Australia’s housing market and decentralised office districts.

24 Dec 2019 - 9:00AM

Although retail property transactions are down globally due to e-commerce, the trade war and Hong Kong’s protests, Asian real estate remains a good investment, especially logistics, Australia’s housing market and decentralised office districts.

Three reasons Asian real estate should continue to attract investors, despite the global slowdown
Macroscope | US-China trade deal and Boris Johnson’s election victory in Britain have stock market bulls cheering, but for how long?

Any rally rooted in a volatile, politically driven and protracted negotiation process, such as Brexit and the trade war, is inherently unsustainable. Scepticism in government bond markets indicates that investors are still deeply ambivalent about next year’s outlook.

20 Dec 2019 - 5:31AM

Any rally rooted in a volatile, politically driven and protracted negotiation process, such as Brexit and the trade war, is inherently unsustainable. Scepticism in government bond markets indicates that investors are still deeply ambivalent about next year’s outlook.

US-China trade deal and Boris Johnson’s election victory in Britain have stock market bulls cheering, but for how long?
The View | Brexit once sent London property prices sinking but may now boost them. Will this last?

Hard Brexit or not, greater clarity on Britain’s political future is making London’s property market appealing to investors, not least those from Hong Kong. This ‘Boris bounce’ may be temporary, but compared to Hong Kong, London remains a model of stability.

17 Dec 2019 - 2:39AM

Hard Brexit or not, greater clarity on Britain’s political future is making London’s property market appealing to investors, not least those from Hong Kong. This ‘Boris bounce’ may be temporary, but compared to Hong Kong, London remains a model of stability.

Brexit once sent London property prices sinking but may now boost them. Will this last?
Macroscope | Why fears about a global recession have disappeared far too quickly

In a matter of months, markets have swung from pessimism about the global economy to optimism. But Europe’s economy remains weak and, with an impending presidential election, it is too soon to say if the US economy is out of the woods.

13 Dec 2019 - 1:32AM

In a matter of months, markets have swung from pessimism about the global economy to optimism. But Europe’s economy remains weak and, with an impending presidential election, it is too soon to say if the US economy is out of the woods.

Why fears about a global recession have disappeared far too quickly
The View | Hong Kong has billions in fiscal firepower but, with a lack of credible governance, the city is powerless to fight a recession

Hong Kong is in recession, confidence levels are at a historic low, and yet the government is spending less than 1 per cent of the city’s GDP on recovery. Then again, the Carrie Lam administration might lack the credibility to do more.

10 Dec 2019 - 10:12AM

Hong Kong is in recession, confidence levels are at a historic low, and yet the government is spending less than 1 per cent of the city’s GDP on recovery. Then again, the Carrie Lam administration might lack the credibility to do more.

Hong Kong has billions in fiscal firepower but, with a lack of credible governance, the city is powerless to fight a recession
Macroscope | Why American consumers will remain a bright spot in the troubled global economy

US factory output is shrinking, but the US economy is holding up because of robust private consumption. This is why the Fed can wait to decide whether to cut rates and Trump is in no hurry to strike a deal with China.

6 Dec 2019 - 4:55AM

US factory output is shrinking, but the US economy is holding up because of robust private consumption. This is why the Fed can wait to decide whether to cut rates and Trump is in no hurry to strike a deal with China.

Why American consumers will remain a bright spot in the troubled global economy
Macroscope | Donald Trump, Brexiteers and other populist politicians mean market appeasers have replaced ‘bond vigilantes’ – for now

Markets once punished fiscal recklessness, but since the 2008 crisis they have increased their tolerance for deficits. The dangerous amount of debt markets are now tolerating means the return of such ‘bond vigilantism’ would be welcome.

29 Nov 2019 - 2:59AM

Markets once punished fiscal recklessness, but since the 2008 crisis they have increased their tolerance for deficits. The dangerous amount of debt markets are now tolerating means the return of such ‘bond vigilantism’ would be welcome.

Donald Trump, Brexiteers and other populist politicians mean market appeasers have replaced ‘bond vigilantes’ – for now
The View | Hong Kong’s protest-hit retail property market hasn’t seen the worst yet. Will shopping mall landlords finally slash rents?

In addition to the global trend of stiff competition from online retailers, Hong Kong shops have faced a sharp drop in mainland visitors and protest vandalism. Stocks of retail property owners are not yet at historic lows, showing the sector has not hit rock bottom.

26 Nov 2019 - 9:38AM

In addition to the global trend of stiff competition from online retailers, Hong Kong shops have faced a sharp drop in mainland visitors and protest vandalism. Stocks of retail property owners are not yet at historic lows, showing the sector has not hit rock bottom.

Hong Kong’s protest-hit retail property market hasn’t seen the worst yet. Will shopping mall landlords finally slash rents?
Macroscope | Hong Kong’s protests complicate already fraught trade war tensions, and the markets know it. So why are they so stable?

Looking not only at major stock indices, but also gauges of consumer worry, there’s little indication of global turmoil. This shows how powerful even glimmers of hope are; still, uncertainty over tariffs needs to end to keep this rally going.

22 Nov 2019 - 4:30AM

Looking not only at major stock indices, but also gauges of consumer worry, there’s little indication of global turmoil. This shows how powerful even glimmers of hope are; still, uncertainty over tariffs needs to end to keep this rally going.

Hong Kong’s protests complicate already fraught trade war tensions, and the markets know it. So why are they so stable?
The View | Hong Kong is a test case of how much political risk investors can stomach

Even as the unrest persists and the violence escalates, markets do not believe the crisis will have systemic impact. But that may change if they become linked to the trade war, despite Donald Trump’s hopes for a limited trade deal.

19 Nov 2019 - 12:09PM

Even as the unrest persists and the violence escalates, markets do not believe the crisis will have systemic impact. But that may change if they become linked to the trade war, despite Donald Trump’s hopes for a limited trade deal.

Hong Kong is a test case of how much political risk investors can stomach
Macroscope | The bulls are back, thanks to better-than-expected market news. But there’s little support for their optimism

Expectations have so much influence over investors that a slower contraction than anticipated has boosted markets. They’ve gotten ahead of themselves: there’s little about global conditions to indicate the economy has hit bottom.

15 Nov 2019 - 4:14AM

Expectations have so much influence over investors that a slower contraction than anticipated has boosted markets. They’ve gotten ahead of themselves: there’s little about global conditions to indicate the economy has hit bottom.

The bulls are back, thanks to better-than-expected market news. But there’s little support for their optimism
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