Mixed economic news is the cause of recent volatility in stock markets, according to Chief Investment Officer Haig Bathgate.
While the US last week posted the best jobless figures since the late 1990s, with unemployment now at 5.6%, other data shows that wages in the world's biggest economy are falling. A strong growing economy needs some element of wage growth – unfortunately average earnings fell 0.2% in December.
The dichotomy between good and bad news stretches across the Atlantic and straddles the issue of falling oil prices. While the US in general has been powering ahead, the economy in Europe remains moribund. And although a fall in oil prices might be seen as good for consumers, markets are worried that it may have other more pernicious effects, whether that's in lower profits for energy companies or in the threat to oil-dependent economies such as Venezuela.
Haig, speaking on BBC Radio's Good Morning Scotland, also commented on the environment for UK retailers.
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