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Signia's Harry Elliman, Investment Analyst features in Citywire's Wealth Manager 'Next Gen' series

Harry Elliman

Published 3/02/2022

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Signia's Harry Elliman, Investment Analyst features in Citywire's Wealth Manager 'Next Gen' series

 

Wealth Manager

Next Gen: Harry Elliman, Signia

Published 4 February, by Katie Gilfillan

 

This week’s industry up-and-comer is Harry Elliman, investment analyst at Signia. He reflects on how he got into the wealth industry, where he sees youth as an advantage, and which fantasy classic he’d bring to a desert island.

Role and responsibilities:

As an investment analyst at Signia, my role is primarily assisting with the investment research that takes place within the firm, alongside helping the investment team with management of client portfolios.

Years in industry/years at firm:

Four years in the investment management industry, two years at Signia.

Top three fund picks and why:

I am currently positioned in funds exposed to global equities that have a tilt to value and cyclicality, primarily in anticipation of higher bond yields and the on-going global economic recovery (Schroder Global Recovery).

I have recently also purchased into Allianz China A shares on a valuation basis but also in the expectation of further stimulus being provided due to the moderation in growth in the Chinese economy.

I have a position in Blackrock Gold as well. Despite the anticipation of higher interest rates, I believe Gold can move further upwards as my perspective is that the Fed will not be able to raise rates as fast as they are expecting, coinciding with the potential for a weaker US dollar, elevated debt levels and the fact that yields, when adjusted for inflation, remain negative.

What first attracted you to the world of wealth management?

The variety of subject matter the role encompasses and how everything interlinks. Topics including economics, investment analysis and geopolitics all interact and influence the global financial system.

Who is your investment hero or someone you admire in the industry?

I don’t really have heroes per see. However, I do enjoy listening to a wide range of research providers and market commentators. I tend to prefer investment participants who have an impartial perspective and consider all variables. This way, a more thorough argument is conveyed.

What is the biggest issue facing this generation of wealth managers?

The pandemic has accelerated the many trends we were seeing through the last few decades, especially in relation to technology and digitalisation. As a result, further adaptability is crucial in performing well.

Specific to markets, the acceleration in debt loads that global economies undertook will weigh largely on public markets and participants.

What were your first, best and worst investment decisions?

First: During my time at university I wanted to gain an insight into financial markets, rather than just exposing myself to the theoretical side in textbooks, so I put a small amount of cash into a trading account. I stuck to indexes at the time as I needed further knowledge to do direct stock analysis, and kept to more regional bets.

Best: It was a personal one. I  undertook a university placement as a financial analyst and used a portion of the salary to self-fund the Investment Management Certificate prior to my final year. 

I haven’t really had a ‘worst’ investment decision yet. I have, of course, incurred losses through trading, but I see this as a point to reflect and learn.

What advice would you give to young people interested in working in wealth management?

I think being able to gain some form of experience (which is hard I know!) is definitely a great advantage. This, alongside an ambitious personality of wanting to learn about the industry can be a great combination in securing a role. 

In what way does being young help you in your role?

The world has changed significantly in the last few decades, especially in respect of technology and globalisation, and I think growing up through that gives a perspective on how quickly things can change, which makes you more aware of the possibilities but also the risks, especially in respect of financial markets.

What is the biggest social issue surrounding the wealth management industry?

Diversity is an important factor in any industry. The inclusion of different perspectives and cultures provides a more coherent view, which is essential for any industry that is in an ever-developing environment. Industries that neglect this will trail behind.

What has been the most significant moment of your career so far?

I’m still in the early years of my career so I wouldn’t say I’ve had a significant moment thus far. At this point in time, I am just focused on progressing as an investment analyst, which will lead to significant developments.

You are marooned on a desert island.  Choose one book, one album and one practical item.

It would have to be Lord of the Rings, primarily because of my childhood.

One album is difficult as I have a very diverse taste in music, but I’d probably go along the lines of Guns N’ Roses or, the opposite side of the spectrum, Hans Zimmer.

I suppose a practical item would be a device to listen to the album. However, I’d probably go for a fishing net – an inflatable raft is a bit too easy.

You have a time machine.  Do you go the future or the past?  When and where?

I’d love to go a few 100 years into the future to see what developments we make, especially in space travel and medicine.

Which three people, dead or alive, would you invite to a dinner party?

Barack Obama, Robert Downey Jr and Sir Ian McKellen. We’d have a T-bone steak with all the trimmings.

 

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