Perspectives Blog

Digital dining: How restaurants are applying technology to drive sales

Daniel Spelman, Equity Analyst | February 24, 2014

Restaurants are modernizing dining with consumer-centric tech focus. Large chains are the leaders, investing more and increasing market share. Innovation is boosting efficiency and reducing costs. In a $680 billion industry that is notoriously low margin, competitive and high touch, restaurants are increasingly using technology to differentiate themselves from the crowd. Advancements in digital ordering, loyalty, payments and convenience are i…

Thoughts on navigating market volatility in today’s technology markets

Rahul Narang, Senior Portfolio Manager | April 28, 2014

We are seeing a market rotation from momentum to value on macro factors and internal market dynamics. Keys are to stay diversified, look for businesses with strong moats and that produce solid cash flow and compare to historical valuations. Favored themes are industry consolidation plays, mobile and Internet. In recent weeks there has been a dramatic shift in alpha generation from hyper growth technology stocks to more value-oriented names. We…

Labor markets in the new digital age

Columbia Management, Investment Team | April 14, 2014

…mpetitive advantage. By Marie Schofield, Chief Economist and Toby Nangle, Head of Multi Asset Allocation A theme not touched on so far in our series on income inequality and secular stagnation is the impact of innovation and technology on economic growth and income. Technological progress carries long-term benefits raising standards of living and boosting productivity; however, it also causes short-term dislocations and job loss for those displa…

A tepid cyclical lift

Tom West, Director of Equity Research | April 28, 2014

…to accelerate, with the Harvard Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity projecting mid-teens growth following mid/high single digits in 2013. In the tech sector, “enterprise” spending and investment remain challenged. Larger technology vendors are seeing an improving European environment but are still experiencing difficult comparisons in emerging markets and U.S. government. Technology hardware companies are facing headwinds to growth, as enter…

Second quarter earnings preview

Tom West, Director of Equity Research | June 30, 2014

…sales, while avoiding excess goods that can lead to promotional activity. Positive commentary, backed by actual metrics, will lead to greater confidence in holding healthy profit margins for the remainder of the year. In the technology sector, people will be looking for trends and commentary on enterprise spend to get a handle on the information technology budgets that constitute the revenues of much of the tech sector. An interesting thesis is…

Predatory trading – Just how big an issue is high-speed trading?

Matt Waldner, Head of U.S. Equity Trading | April 7, 2014

…lator investigations. The first focus will be on latency arbitrage. With faster connections to exchanges, high-frequency firms are able to get faster signals, and “jump ahead” of slower orders. With significant investments in technology, HFT traders hold a big speed advantage, which has yielded huge profits. Example: An HFT firm places a sell order on an exchange. When executed, HFT signaled: “There is a buyer of the stock.” HFT quickly race to t…

Take an active approach to selecting your active manager

Robert McConnaughey, Director of Global Research | April 7, 2014

…in low correlation sectors might result in a cumulative residual bet on a factor the manager did not intend. We have observed many cases where managers thought they were betting on attractive sounding themes such as specific technology innovations that increase productivity, but unfortunately, a residual exposure to an unintended factor exposure such as currency fluctuation ended up being the primary driver of success or failure. A careful look…