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 world is waiting for a sharp slowdown in the US economy

The Fed’s abrupt shift in policy has wreaked havoc on markets the world over, pummelling currencies and bonds. The US central bank’s fight against inflation is likely to inflict more pain on other countries, unless the American economy slows enough to force an end to the tightening campaign.

The Fed’s abrupt shift in policy has wreaked havoc on markets the world over, pummelling currencies and bonds. The US central bank’s fight against inflation is likely to inflict more pain on other countries, unless the American economy slows enough to force an end to the tightening campaign.

30 Sep 2022 - 2:06AM
The View | Worst may be over for Hong Kong’s property sector, but a full recovery is impossible without mainland reopening

The end to hotel quarantine could not have come sooner for Hong Kong, where commercial rents have fallen by a third since 2019 and home prices are being hit by rising interest rates. But even with this win, hopes of a recovery are tempered by the fact that little has changed over the border.

The end to hotel quarantine could not have come sooner for Hong Kong, where commercial rents have fallen by a third since 2019 and home prices are being hit by rising interest rates. But even with this win, hopes of a recovery are tempered by the fact that little has changed over the border.

27 Sep 2022 - 9:15AM
Macroscope | Is the US dollar invincible, or just the best house in a bad neighbourhood?

Dollar strength has been a wrecking ball swinging through forex markets, buoyed by the Federal Reserve’s interest rate increases and severe problems facing other major economies. If the Fed were forced to cut rates – because the US enters recession or due to a threat to the global economy – the dollar would depreciate

Dollar strength has been a wrecking ball swinging through forex markets, buoyed by the Federal Reserve’s interest rate increases and severe problems facing other major economies. If the Fed were forced to cut rates – because the US enters recession or due to a threat to the global economy – the dollar would depreciate

23 Sep 2022 - 2:50AM
The View | Why China’s commercial property sector is thriving despite the ‘zero-Covid’ policy

While Beijing’s policy objectives have curbed debt and speculation in residential real estate, they provide underpinnings for growth in other sectors. These sectors that contribute to China’s self-sufficiency drive also have the assets favoured by international investors.

While Beijing’s policy objectives have curbed debt and speculation in residential real estate, they provide underpinnings for growth in other sectors. These sectors that contribute to China’s self-sufficiency drive also have the assets favoured by international investors.

19 Sep 2022 - 1:15PM
Macroscope | Are credit rating agencies right to be bullish on China’s economy?

Investors are turning bearish on the Chinese economy, amid expectations that the zero-Covid policy might persist well into next year. Yet the big three credit rating firms still see reasons for optimism in the middle to long term.

Investors are turning bearish on the Chinese economy, amid expectations that the zero-Covid policy might persist well into next year. Yet the big three credit rating firms still see reasons for optimism in the middle to long term.

15 Sep 2022 - 12:30PM
The View | Macau’s property market has taken a hard knock, but the dice are loaded in the city’s favour long-term

China’s tough line on vice and its zero-Covid approach have hurt Macau’s gaming industry over the past several years and its real estate markets more recently. However, in the long run, Beijing will still prefer a more tightly controlled gambling market on the mainland’s doorstep to a free-for-all across China.

China’s tough line on vice and its zero-Covid approach have hurt Macau’s gaming industry over the past several years and its real estate markets more recently. However, in the long run, Beijing will still prefer a more tightly controlled gambling market on the mainland’s doorstep to a free-for-all across China.

12 Sep 2022 - 4:00PM
Macroscope | Why post-Brexit Britain could be source of next financial crisis

While there are signs of severe stress in developing economies across the world, developed economies are no safe haven. The next emerging-market-style crisis could erupt in the UK, as it reels from inflation, high energy prices, a tumbling pound and the consequences of Brexit.

While there are signs of severe stress in developing economies across the world, developed economies are no safe haven. The next emerging-market-style crisis could erupt in the UK, as it reels from inflation, high energy prices, a tumbling pound and the consequences of Brexit.

9 Sep 2022 - 1:30AM
The View | China’s banks are trapped between a property crisis and a sluggish economy

With mortgage boycotts signalling a loss of confidence in China’s property sector, banks are under pressure to help developers deliver on promised homes. However, the quality of the collateral that secures loans to developers is a broader concern, even as the economy struggles to reboot under strict zero-Covid measures.

With mortgage boycotts signalling a loss of confidence in China’s property sector, banks are under pressure to help developers deliver on promised homes. However, the quality of the collateral that secures loans to developers is a broader concern, even as the economy struggles to reboot under strict zero-Covid measures.

5 Sep 2022 - 4:00PM
Macroscope | Fears of ‘hot money’ flows temper India’s desire to join global bond indices

There is massive scope for further inflows into India’s bond market, and China’s success shows index inclusion can have great benefits. New Delhi has reason to be wary of speculative money flows, though, and bond market liberalisation could not come at a more perilous time.

There is massive scope for further inflows into India’s bond market, and China’s success shows index inclusion can have great benefits. New Delhi has reason to be wary of speculative money flows, though, and bond market liberalisation could not come at a more perilous time.

1 Sep 2022 - 2:33PM
Macroscope | Investors are bearish on China, but have more to fear in the US

China’s zero-Covid policy and property crackdown have undermined attempts to boost growth and dashed investor confidence – but at least expectations are in line with reality. In the US, markets are still in denial about the Fed’s determination to bring down inflation with aggressive policy tightening.

China’s zero-Covid policy and property crackdown have undermined attempts to boost growth and dashed investor confidence – but at least expectations are in line with reality. In the US, markets are still in denial about the Fed’s determination to bring down inflation with aggressive policy tightening.

25 Aug 2022 - 1:30PM
The View | Why Japanese property will remain a refuge as interest rates rise in other markets

The combination of a weak yen, cheap debt, a large and liquid market, and more investible regional cities is an attractive proposition for real estate investors.

The combination of a weak yen, cheap debt, a large and liquid market, and more investible regional cities is an attractive proposition for real estate investors.

22 Aug 2022 - 4:30PM
Macroscope | China’s zero-Covid policy is thwarting efforts to stabilise the economy

Beijing is trying to simultaneously pursue a zero-tolerance approach to Covid-19, reduce debt exposure and ease monetary policy to boost growth. These policies contradict each other, though, and draconian, growth-sapping lockdowns stand in the way of rebuilding confidence.

Beijing is trying to simultaneously pursue a zero-tolerance approach to Covid-19, reduce debt exposure and ease monetary policy to boost growth. These policies contradict each other, though, and draconian, growth-sapping lockdowns stand in the way of rebuilding confidence.

18 Aug 2022 - 11:45AM
The View | Why Hong Kong’s industrial real estate is going from strength to strength

Hong Kong’s industrial assets have supplanted offices as a dominant sector and also provide a rare bright spot for Asia’s commercial property market. A scarcity of quality industrial space and Hong Kong’s status as a logistics hub add to the appeal.

Hong Kong’s industrial assets have supplanted offices as a dominant sector and also provide a rare bright spot for Asia’s commercial property market. A scarcity of quality industrial space and Hong Kong’s status as a logistics hub add to the appeal.

15 Aug 2022 - 12:35PM
Macroscope | Why a soft landing for the global economy looks unlikely

The global economy is in a race against time. Core inflation needs to drop sharply and quickly enough for central banks to call time on their tightening campaigns. Unfortunately, the damage may already be done, with inflation expectations becoming entrenched.

The global economy is in a race against time. Core inflation needs to drop sharply and quickly enough for central banks to call time on their tightening campaigns. Unfortunately, the damage may already be done, with inflation expectations becoming entrenched.

12 Aug 2022 - 2:27AM
The View | Why Sydney’s sharp housing slowdown is the canary in the coal mine

Home prices in Sydney have been dropping at their fastest pace since the early 1980s, largely because of the sudden about-turn in Australian monetary policy. While some cities, such as Adelaide and Perth, are still enjoying price gains on a monthly and quarterly basis, the trend in Sydney should have alarm bells ringing.

Home prices in Sydney have been dropping at their fastest pace since the early 1980s, largely because of the sudden about-turn in Australian monetary policy. While some cities, such as Adelaide and Perth, are still enjoying price gains on a monthly and quarterly basis, the trend in Sydney should have alarm bells ringing.

8 Aug 2022 - 4:30PM
Macroscope | Investors must remember bear market rallies always end in tears

The sudden surge in global equity markets since the middle of June must be recognised for what it is – a classic bear market rally, with weak foundations. For a sustainable turnaround in sentiment, at least four conditions need to be met and it is uncertain that this will happen.

The sudden surge in global equity markets since the middle of June must be recognised for what it is – a classic bear market rally, with weak foundations. For a sustainable turnaround in sentiment, at least four conditions need to be met and it is uncertain that this will happen.

5 Aug 2022 - 4:33AM
The View | China is not going to bail out its property sector, despite investors’ wishful thinking

Investors are hoping China’s property crisis is finally dire enough for Beijing to step in with a relief package. But policymakers have other priorities, like curbing speculation and containing Covid-19, and will not easily bow to market pressure.

Investors are hoping China’s property crisis is finally dire enough for Beijing to step in with a relief package. But policymakers have other priorities, like curbing speculation and containing Covid-19, and will not easily bow to market pressure.

1 Aug 2022 - 12:26PM
Macroscope | Why betting against the Hong Kong dollar peg is a fool’s errand

The Hong Kong dollar has once again come under pressure, with the Monetary Authority forced to step in and defend it. Despite criticism of the peg to the US dollar, the city’s long-standing commitment to maintaining it and its special significance make it a reliable bet.

The Hong Kong dollar has once again come under pressure, with the Monetary Authority forced to step in and defend it. Despite criticism of the peg to the US dollar, the city’s long-standing commitment to maintaining it and its special significance make it a reliable bet.

28 Jul 2022 - 4:04PM
The View | Why Chinese buyers are still a force to reckon with in California’s property market

While the ‘China shock’ is over, Chinese buyers still lead the pack in the dollar volume of US homes purchased and the average purchase price. Public schools and universities, quality of life and a lack of scapegoating for rising home prices make California an attractive destination.

While the ‘China shock’ is over, Chinese buyers still lead the pack in the dollar volume of US homes purchased and the average purchase price. Public schools and universities, quality of life and a lack of scapegoating for rising home prices make California an attractive destination.

25 Jul 2022 - 12:34PM
Macroscope | Central banks forced to continue raising interest rates despite slowdown after months of dithering

Having spent months convinced price pressures were transitory, policymakers have much to answer for as they scramble to raise interest rates. While there is a chance tighter policy can bring down prices sufficiently without causing a recession, it is an increasingly slim one.

Having spent months convinced price pressures were transitory, policymakers have much to answer for as they scramble to raise interest rates. While there is a chance tighter policy can bring down prices sufficiently without causing a recession, it is an increasingly slim one.

22 Jul 2022 - 2:09AM
The View | How higher inflation and rising interest rates will test Asia’s buoyant property market

Asia’s real-estate sector benefits from relatively strong fundamentals and reliable demand that should limit any fall in prices. Given huge demand for home ownership and the large amount of capital waiting to be deployed, Asian property should continue to perform well.

Asia’s real-estate sector benefits from relatively strong fundamentals and reliable demand that should limit any fall in prices. Given huge demand for home ownership and the large amount of capital waiting to be deployed, Asian property should continue to perform well.

19 Jul 2022 - 6:45AM
Macroscope | Will China’s ‘zero-Covid’ policy thwart its plan for infrastructure-fuelled stimulus?

While the US aggressively tightens monetary policy, China is going back to its old playbook of stimulus via public investment. However, the tensions between China’s public health policies and its shifting economic priorities are a key impediment to effective stimulus.

While the US aggressively tightens monetary policy, China is going back to its old playbook of stimulus via public investment. However, the tensions between China’s public health policies and its shifting economic priorities are a key impediment to effective stimulus.

14 Jul 2022 - 12:33PM
The View | Demand for Singapore rental property is surging amid supply shortage and expat arrivals

Leasing in Singapore has been frantic as pandemic-induced domestic and external factors cause dramatic shifts in supply and demand. Although rents are booming and schooling, tax and immigration pressures are taking the shine off Singapore’s status for expats, an exodus remains unlikely.

Leasing in Singapore has been frantic as pandemic-induced domestic and external factors cause dramatic shifts in supply and demand. Although rents are booming and schooling, tax and immigration pressures are taking the shine off Singapore’s status for expats, an exodus remains unlikely.

11 Jul 2022 - 1:15PM
The View | Why comparisons of Asian market turmoil today with the 1997 financial crisis are wide of the mark

The 25th anniversary of the devaluation of the Thai baht that sparked turmoil across Southeast Asia has thrown today’s Asian market turbulence into sharp relief. However, many Asian markets are now in a stronger position on the currency and current account fronts, and face vastly different conditions from those in 1997.

The 25th anniversary of the devaluation of the Thai baht that sparked turmoil across Southeast Asia has thrown today’s Asian market turbulence into sharp relief. However, many Asian markets are now in a stronger position on the currency and current account fronts, and face vastly different conditions from those in 1997.

7 Jul 2022 - 2:34PM
Macroscope | Why zero-Covid China is looking more appealing to global investors

For the first time since Chinese stocks began their long slide, a sustained rally has convinced many that the tide has turned. The most important driver is the growing belief among traders that the worst of the zero-Covid-induced downturn has passed.

For the first time since Chinese stocks began their long slide, a sustained rally has convinced many that the tide has turned. The most important driver is the growing belief among traders that the worst of the zero-Covid-induced downturn has passed.

1 Jul 2022 - 2:28AM
The View | Hong Kong, Singapore investors filling void in London property left by mainland Chinese retreat

Beijing’s imposition of capital controls, escalating trade tensions with the West and regulatory tightening has ended a years-long buying spree. As mainland money departs, other Asian investors still value the safety, liquidity and transparency of London’s property market.

Beijing’s imposition of capital controls, escalating trade tensions with the West and regulatory tightening has ended a years-long buying spree. As mainland money departs, other Asian investors still value the safety, liquidity and transparency of London’s property market.

28 Jun 2022 - 3:30AM
Macroscope | What the bitcoin bloodbath reveals about the cryptocurrency market

The shakeout in the cryptocurrency sector is prompting renewed questions about the foundations of the highly volatile digital asset market. Such assets were never meant to be a hedge against inflation, and the end of an era of cheap money has accentuated their long-standing weaknesses.

The shakeout in the cryptocurrency sector is prompting renewed questions about the foundations of the highly volatile digital asset market. Such assets were never meant to be a hedge against inflation, and the end of an era of cheap money has accentuated their long-standing weaknesses.

23 Jun 2022 - 10:58PM
The View | New Zealand’s housing reforms lead the way on tackling affordability and speculation

The Ardern government is not shying away from policies that address the underlying causes of excessive price appreciation. Countries that have resorted to scapegoating foreign investors or been reluctant to antagonise wealthy homeowners should learn from the Kiwi example.

The Ardern government is not shying away from policies that address the underlying causes of excessive price appreciation. Countries that have resorted to scapegoating foreign investors or been reluctant to antagonise wealthy homeowners should learn from the Kiwi example.

21 Jun 2022 - 6:45AM
Macroscope | Recession and inflation fears give way to a crisis of confidence in economic policymaking

As major economies continue to grapple with high prices while fending off a slowdown, the effectiveness of central banks and governments is being called into question. At the heart of the brutal sell-off in markets is a crisis of confidence in global policymaking.

As major economies continue to grapple with high prices while fending off a slowdown, the effectiveness of central banks and governments is being called into question. At the heart of the brutal sell-off in markets is a crisis of confidence in global policymaking.

17 Jun 2022 - 2:30AM
The View | Has the Covid-19 pandemic finally pushed Japan towards flexible work arrangements?

The pandemic has done more to shake up Japan’s work system than any reform programme could have, with companies now more open to flexible arrangements. While it is unlikely that the pre-pandemic status quo will return, many traditional conventions, like face-to-face meetings, will endure.

The pandemic has done more to shake up Japan’s work system than any reform programme could have, with companies now more open to flexible arrangements. While it is unlikely that the pre-pandemic status quo will return, many traditional conventions, like face-to-face meetings, will endure.

14 Jun 2022 - 9:15AM