Frank Muller and new Art Deco style watch

The Swiss luxury watch maker, Frank Muller, has unveiled new models in the World Presentation of Haute Horologerie (WPHH).

The new models, Vanguard Grazy Hours, display numerals in an unconventional order, with Art Deco pop art style.

Driven by a new mechanism, the central hours jumps from one hour to the next following the correct order of numerals allthough they are randomly placed on the dial. These watches are designed for women.

The company is also unveiling two new facilities, as part of the Watchland production site. After these investments, the company can now offer all its 450 employees the same site and thus improve efficiency. The sites will be opened next week in Genthod, Switzerland.


Highlights of the year 2018 – Brexit, trade talks and green finance

The year 2018 was a year of Brexit, electric cars and trade talks. It included special moments in the financial markets and in the company side. Green Bonds and Green Finance were getting more attention in the markets and trade talks and Brexit were the topics during the year 2018 along. Climate Change and low carbon landed also in the agenda of central banks.

Investors were also asking what is the role of the City as a global financial hub. Should it have its own rules in spite of the Brexit? In the financial hub competition, Frankfurt and Paris were the European cities to get more new financial offices as financial companies were moving some operations to the EU side.

The UK Parliament is expected to vote of the Brexit during Janury 2019 after very intensive debate about the deal during the year.

Climate Change has become part of the everyday life in the financial markets and for example one of the biggest insurance companies in the US, Berskhire Hathaway informed in February 2018, that it has got 3 billion dollars losses of the natural catastrophies, the hurricances in the US. Several central banks, including the European Central Bank and some Asian ones, have also agreed about the co-operation in the climate issues and how to monitor the impact on the markets.

In the tech-side augmented reality and ioT were the themes for the year. Apple, Amazon, Google, Tesla, Intel  and Samsung  were one of the tech-companies to deliver new services related to the new technology. On the other side of the topic, Facebook was dealing with the privacy issues globally. New tech- companies listed in the markets were for example Spotify and Xiaomi.

Year 2018 was a year of electric cars in many countries. The e-cars breakthrough with charging issues was one of the tech topics as well. Telsa founder Elon Musk was the leading industry sector figure as he estimated that Tesla would make one million cars by 2020 in February 2018.

Also the German automakers announced new investments and concept cars. For example the BMW Group launched an autonomous driving campus in Munich in March 2018.

Year 2018 was also a year for luxury goods and services. The Basel World 2018 -fair announced its good selling and for example the CEO of Hublot, Ricardo Guadalupe,  told ComteamPUB+ that the company expects double digit growth for the year and that the Chinese customers will be the leading segment.

In the debt markets the US Uber and Netflix issued their junk bonds to investors. Uber, the ride-sharing company, is said to plan an IPO for the year 2019 according to the secret filings to the SEC.

One of the biggest infrastructure projects ever, the China Silk Road, is getting more attention from the green investors side, while the organization made its first announcement of the green principles for the project co-operation and operators. The ancient Silk Road is expected to rise the GDP growth by 4 % or 240 billion dollars in the countries invlolved according to Credit Suisse analysis.

The aim of the Roman time Silk Road is to connect the western Europe with the eastern coast of China and to renew the infrasturcture in between. This means also that the 10 world largest container ports are located along the route.

Trade talks between different countries have continued lively during the year. US and China have been in the headlines, but also the EU with its agreement with Japan.  The political situation and rising volatility in the financial markets tell the direction for the next year. Geopolitical easing is needed.

Päivi Härkönen, co-founder, ComteamPUB+



Business Finance Lifestyle

Stocks and oil ended down before the Christmas Day

US stocks and oil prices ended down on Christmas Eve trading on Wall Street. The financial markets turmoil has caused on uneasy way for investors while the stock prises have fallen nearly 20 % from their hights this year in September -meaning that the direction is towards bear markets.

The information that the Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin  made a call with regulators & banks on Monday was a big signal whether the markets are having systemic risk.

Systemic risk is the possibility that an event at the company level could trigger severe instability or collapse an entire industry or economy, says Investopedia. Systemic risk was a major contributor to the financial crises in 2008. Companies considered to be a systemic risk are called “too big to fail.” Lehman Brothers was an example of the systemic risk and for example the Dodd-Frank Act in the US financial markets was created after the Lehman collapse to protect investors.

Also new information may include that Climate Change and its impact for example on insurance  and financial companies and their risk management may also lead to systemic risk.

For example the Bank of England´s Governor Mark Carney has said that the Central Bank would include green tests for banks in order to analyse the impact of Climate Change and how the banks are prepared for this  risk type. The announcement of the green tests was published in December and the test are expected to start already next year if the Central Bank´s Commitee approves the initiative.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has included the Climate Change impact as part of the company reporting. This means that companies should report the direct and indirect effects of Climate Change in their disclosures.

Dow Jones ended down 2,91 % and was 21 792 points, Nasdaq-index ended down 2,21 % and was 6192 points. The larger S&P 500 -index ended down 2,71 % and was 2351 points. Tomorrow on Tuesday the markets are closed.

Brent oil dropped over 6 % to 50,44 dollars, the lowest level this year in the markets.

In the forex trading the dollar and euro values were about the same level as yesterday. Euro was trading at 1,14 dollars and UK sterling was trading at 1,27 dollars.