Turning points

UBS Wealth Insights 2019

2018 was a notable year for financial markets. Heightened US-China tensions and a maturing global cycle contributed to more turbulent conditions.

So what can investors expect to see in 2019?

The investment environment is becoming more challenging. Political risks, ranging from trade disputes, to Brexit, to Italy, abound. But at the same time, some of the best opportunities can present themselves amid dislocations to help investors achieve their financial goals.

That said, many investors make their costliest errors during transition points in the market cycle. Our Liquidity. Longevity. Legacy (3L) approach to wealth management can help you plan for your long-term goals while reducing the danger of falling prey to costly decisions during downturns.

Not sure where to start? Join us at the UBS Wealth Insights forum for our 2019 outlook, where we will look at risks, and opportunities in the months to come. So grab your paddle and start your journey.


An overview of the topics discussed at the forum.


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Keynote Speakers

Mr Heng Swee Keat

Minister for Finance

Mr Heng Swee Keat is the Minister for Finance and Member of Parliament for Tampines GRC.

The Ministry of Finance manages the national budget, oversees corporate governance regulations, and supervises the prudent investment and utilisation of public funds and government reserves. Mr Heng co-chaired the Committee on the Future Economy (CFE), which charted the strategies for Singapore's next phase of growth. He chairs the tripartite Future Economy Council, which oversees the implementation of national strategies in areas such as skills and capabilities development, innovation and productivity, and industry transformation. He is also the Chairman of the National Research Foundation, which sets the direction for Singapore's research, innovation and enterprise strategies.

Before this, Mr Heng served as Minister for Education from 2011 to 2015. He drove programmes for a student-centric, values-driven education system, emphasising the holistic development of students and multiple educational pathways. While at MOE, Mr Heng also led Our Singapore Conversation, a national consultation exercise that reached out to close to 50,000 Singaporeans on their aspirations for Singapore's future. In 2015, he chaired the Singapore 50 (SG50) Steering Committee leading the celebrations for Singapore's Golden Jubilee.

Prior to entering politics in May 2011, Mr Heng was the Managing Director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), where he received the "Central Bank Governor of the Year in Asia-Pacific" Award by the British magazine The Banker. He has served in various other public service positions, including appointments in the Singapore Police Force, as the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, as the Chief Executive Officer of the Trade Development Board, and as the Principal Private Secretary to then-Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew from 1997 to 2000. In 2001, Mr Heng was awarded the Gold Medal in Public Administration, and the Meritorious Medal in 2010 for his contribution to the public service in Singapore.

Mr Heng has an MA in Economics from Cambridge University. He also holds a Masters in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.

The Right Honourable Gordon Brown

Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (2007 – 2010) and Chancellor of Exchequer (1997 -2007)

Gordon Brown served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Labour Party from 2007 to 2010. As Prime Minister, Brown’s tenure coincided with the start of the global financial crisis. He was one of the first to initiate calls for global action while introducing a range of rescue measures in the UK. In April 2009, Brown hosted the G20 Summit in London, where world leaders committed to making $1.1 trillion available to help the world economy through the crisis and restore credit, growth, and jobs. They also pledged to strengthen financial supervision and regulation.

Previously, Brown, a Member of Parliament from 1983 to 2015, served as Chancellor of the Exchequer from 1997 to 2007, making him the longest-serving Chancellor in modern history. His tenure was marked by major reform of Britain’s monetary and fiscal policy and sustained investment in health, education, and overseas aid.

Brown’s experiences during the global financial crisis convinced him of the urgent need for greater international cooperation to prevent future shocks to the global economy and led him to write Beyond the Crash: Overcoming the First Crisis of Globalisation (2010). He is also the author of a memoir, My Life, Our Times (2017), highlighting the lessons he learned from his professional career and personal life, and describing how those lessons can be applied to today’s challenges.

Brown’s time in government shaped his views on the importance of education as a fundamental right of every child in the world, and as an engine of future economic growth and prosperity. As the United Nations Special Envoy for Global Education, he passionately advocates for global action to ensure education for all.

Since leaving government, Brown has also advised the World Economic Forum and served as New York University’s inaugural Distinguished Global Leader in Residence. Brown, who has a Doctor of Philosophy degree in History from the University of Edinburgh, spent his early career working as a lecturer.

He is married to Sarah Brown, a charity campaigner, and they have two young sons.

Speakers (in order of appearance)

Edmund Koh

Head of Wealth Management APAC, UBS Global Wealth Management

Edmund Koh was appointed Head of Wealth Management Asia Pacific on 1 January 2016, a business which manages invested assets of over CHF 260 billion across the region. He joined UBS in February 2012 as Group Managing Director, heading the UBS Wealth Management South East Asia and Asia Pacific Hub. Edmund, a Singaporean, is also a member of the UBS Global Wealth Management Executive Committee and Global Head of Affluent, as well as Country Head of UBS in Singapore.

Edmund's distinguished career in Asia's financial services industry spans more than 20 years, during which time he garnered a deep understanding of Asian markets and developed a strong track record in leading and building successful businesses in Asia. Prior to joining UBS, Koh was President and Director of Ta Chong Bank and before that was Managing Director and Regional Head of the Consumer Banking Group at DBS Bank.

Edmund has always been committed to talent development and training. He spearheaded the UBS Youth Finance Academy in 2015 to commemorate both the 50th anniversary of UBS in Asia, and Singapore's 50th anniversary. Additionally, Edmund also supports the various UBS community investments in education and social entrepreneurship such as mentoring programs for youths that are focused on communication, leadership and resilience as well as performing and visual arts programs for special needs children. He also encourages skill-based volunteering initiatives aimed at providing capacity building support to UBS's community partners.

Edmund holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Toronto, Canada.

August Hatecke

Head of Wealth Management South East Asia, UBS Global Wealth Management

August Hatecke was appointed Head of UBS Global Wealth Management South East Asia in April 2016 and Head of UBS Wealth in June 2017. August previously served as UBS Head of Ultra High Net Worth and Global Family Office Switzerland based in Zurich where he was responsible for managing the needs of wealthy clients in Switzerland.

August started his career with the Investment Banking arm of SBC O'Connor Warburg Dillon Read (the fore-runner to UBS) in 1994 before moving to Private Banking where he was working on Active Advisory, Portfolio Management, Treasury and Execution. He was with Credit Suisse AG for the period 2001-2010 where he headed teams in Private Banking Switzerland, Investment Services and Products as well as Trading and Sales. Since returning to UBS in 2010, he has been responsible for the Ultra High Net Worth and Global Family Office business for UBS Switzerland AG.

August holds a Master Degree in Economics from the University of Zurich.

Mark Haefele

Global Chief Investment Officer, UBS Global Wealth Management

Mark Haefele is the Chief Investment Officer of UBS Global Wealth Management and the Chair of the UBS Global Investment Committee. In this capacity, Mark oversees the investment policy and strategy for approximately USD 2 trillion in invested assets.

Mark joined UBS as Head of Investment, CIO WM when the CIO office was founded in 2011.

Before joining UBS, Mark was the co-founder and co-fund manager at Sonic Capital. He also served as a Managing Director at Matrix Capital Management.

A former lecturer and acting dean at Harvard University, Mark is a frequent contributor to numerous financial media, including CNBC, Bloomberg and the WSJ.

Mark received a BA from Princeton, and both an MA and PhD from Harvard University.

As a Fulbright Scholar, he also received an MA from the Australian National University.

Min Lan Tan

Head Chief Investment Office APAC, UBS Global Wealth Management

Tan Min Lan is the Head of the Asia Pacific Investment Office at UBS Global Wealth Management Chief Investment Office, since July 2013. She serves as a member of the Global Investment Committee, Emerging Market Investment Committee and Asia Investment Committee, which formulate the regional and global UBS House View.

Prior to joining UBS Global Wealth Management, Min Lan spent eleven years with the UBS Investment Bank where she held a number of senior appointments, and was ranked the number 1 analyst in Singapore by Asiamoney for ten straight years. Before joining UBS, Min Lan worked as a senior economist with the Econometric Modelling unit at the Monetary Authority of Singapore, as well as an economist and strategist at Merrill Lynch covering the Asian equities markets.

Kelvin Tay

Regional Chief Investment Officer, UBS Global Wealth Management

Kelvin Tay is the Regional Chief Investment Officer at UBS Global Wealth Management. Kelvin is a member of the UBS Global Emerging Markets Investment Committee, as well as the Asia-Pacific Investment Committee where he provides strategic research and inputs to the investment and asset allocation process across asset classes.

Based in Singapore, Kelvin joined UBS Global Wealth Management Asia in April 2006 and was deputy head of P&S Consulting (Southeast Asia), where he helped clients structure investment portfolios based on asset allocation. Prior to joining UBS, Kelvin worked at Deutsche Bank Private Wealth Management (Asia) as the Asian & European Equity Strategist responsible for Asian & European equity selection. He was also the portfolio manager of the Asian equities portfolio and was also responsible for conducting funds research.

From 2002 to 2004, Kelvin was a Regional Telecoms Analyst with JPMorgan Chase where he was consistently one of the top 3 rated regional Asian telecoms analysts in international surveys such as AsiaMoney and Institutional Investor.

From 2000 to 2002, Kelvin was a Regional Telecoms Analyst with ABN AMRO (Asia) Ltd in Hong Kong, where he was ranked No.3 in AsiaMoney's Asia-wide regional telecoms analyst survey in 2001 and his team was ranked No. 1 in the 2000 Greenwich survey. Prior to that, Kelvin worked at Overseas Union Bank in Singapore as a credit analyst in loan syndications and capital markets.

Dr. Keyu Jin

Professor of Economics at the London school of Economics

Dr. Keyu Jin is a tenured professor of Economics at the London school of Economics. She is from Beijing, China, and holds a B.A., M.A. and Phd from Harvard University. Her research focuses on international macroeconomics and the Chinese economy. Multiple academic works have been published in the top academic journals in Economics. Outside academia, she serves as a non-executive director to Richemont Group, the second largest luxury conglomerate. She also serves on the working committee for China Banking Regulatory Committee on Fintech.

In recent years, she has focused on technology investments in China, and is a general partner at Sky9 capital, a leading venture fund in China. A columnist for Project Syndicate and Caixin Magazine, the main economics and finance magazine in China, she writes widely about the Chinese economy and global finance, and has made multiple op-ed contributions to the Financial Times. She has had prior experience at the IMF, the World Bank, the New York Fed, Goldman Sachs, as well as other financial institutions. She was named Young global leader by the World Economic Forum in 2014.

Kishore Mahbubani

Senior Advisor (University & Global Relations) and Professor in the Practice of Public Policy National University of Singapore

Professor Kishore Mahbubani is Senior Advisor (University & Global Relations) and Professor in the Practice of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore, where he also served as Dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy from 2004 to 2017. Concurrently, Prof Mahbubani serves in the Boards and Councils of institutions around the world, including the Yale President's Council on International Activities (PCIA), University of Bocconi International Advisory Committee and the World Economic Forum - Global Agenda Council on Geo-economics. Before that, he enjoyed a long career with the Singapore Foreign Service from 1971 to 2004.

He had postings in Cambodia (where he served during the war in 1973-74), Malaysia, Washington DC and New York, where he served two stints as Singapore’s Ambassador to the UN and as President of the UN Security Council in January 2001 and May 2002. He was Permanent Secretary at the Singapore Foreign Ministry from 1993 to 1998. He also served as a member of Commission of Eminent Persons under the chairmanship of the former President of Mexico Ernesto Zedillo to advice the International Atomic Energy Agency from 2007 to 2008.

Prof Mahbubani has spoken and published globally. He is the author of Can Asians Think?, Beyond The Age Of Innocence, The New Asian Hemisphere, The Great Convergence (which was selected by the Financial Times as one of the best books of 2013) and Can Singapore Survive?, and co-author of The ASEAN Miracle. His latest book, Has the West Lost it? A Provocation was published in April 2018. More information on his writings can be found at www.mahbubani.net.

Prof Mahbubani was awarded the President’s Scholarship in 1967. He graduated with a First Class Honours degree in Philosophy from the University of Singapore in 1971. From Dalhousie University, Canada, he received a Master’s degree in Philosophy in 1976 and an honorary doctorate in 1995. He spent a year as a fellow at the Center for International Affairs at Harvard University from 1991 to 1992. Prof Mahbubani was conferred The Public Administration Medal (Gold) by the Singapore Government in 1998. He was listed as one of the top 100 public intellectuals in the world by Foreign Policy and Prospect magazines in September 2005, and included in the March 2009 Financial Times list of Top 50 individuals who would shape the debate on the future of capitalism. He was selected as one of Foreign Policy’s Top Global Thinkers in 2010 and 2011. In 2011, he was described as “the muse of the Asian century”. Most recently, he was selected by Prospect magazine as one of the top 50 world thinkers for 2014.

Matt Miller

Political economist and corporate affairs advisor at Capital Group

Matt Miller is a political economist and corporate affairs advisor at Capital Group where his duties include analyzing U.S. policy trends that affect investment decisions, and supporting Capital’s communication and engagement efforts with a wide range of external audiences. He also hosts the firm’s new podcast, “Capital Ideas,” which features a blend of long-term investment insights from Capital’s team, and conversations with top authors and thinkers relevant to global finance. He has 32 years of industry experience and has been with Capital Group for three years.

Prior to joining Capital, Matt was a senior advisor at McKinsey & Company. Before that, he served as a senior advisor in the White House Office of Management and Budget and was a White House Fellow serving as a special assistant to the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. He was also a columnist for The Washington Post; the host of public radio’s “Left, Right & Center” program; and a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress. He has authored two books on public policy — The Two-Percent Solution: Fixing America’s Problems in Ways Liberals and Conservatives Can Love and The Tyranny of Dead Ideas — and has contributed to Fortune, Time, The New Republic and various other national publications. He holds a law degree from Columbia Law School, where he was a James Kent scholar, and a bachelor’s degree in economics from Brown University, graduating magna cum laude. Matt is based in Los Angeles.

John Hsin

Managing Partner of Huaxing Growth Capital

John has 20 years of private equity investment experience. He joined China Renaissance in 2012 to spearhead CR’s PE investment funds – Huaxing Capital. Prior to joining China Renaissance, John was a Partner and Managing Director for Highland Capital Partners in China, Investment Director for Intel Capital China, and Investment Manager at Walden International in US Silicon Valley. After founding Huaxing Capital, John has led Huaxing’s investments in Didi, Dianping, Meituan, Zhaogang, Lexin, Ucloud, Lagou, Medlinker, Mobanker, Sensetime, Netis, and Mining Lamp Big Data.

John has a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Dartmouth College, Bachelor of Science degree in physics from Vassar College, and MBA from Harvard Business School.

Geoffrey Wong

Head of Global Emerging Markets and Asia Pacific Equities, UBS Asset Management

Geoffrey Wong is Head of Emerging Markets and Asia-Pacific Equities with overall responsibility for all Emerging Markets, Asian, Japanese and Australian equity teams, strategies and research. Geoffrey is also responsible for research, portfolio management and construction for Emerging Market Strategies.

He chairs the Emerging Markets Equity Strategy Committee and is based in Singapore.

Geoffrey joined UBS in 1997. His prior experience includes co-founding an Asian investment management firm, where he served as Director of Investment Management responsible for asset allocation and stock selection for global and regional institutional portfolios.

Geoffrey served on the board of directors of Singapore Exchange, the combined stock and futures exchange of Singapore between 2003 and 2006. He is a member of the Singapore Society of Financial Analysts and a Fellow of the Institute of Banking and Finance.

Sundeep Gantori

Equity Analyst, Chief Investment Office , UBS Global Wealth Management

Sundeep graduated in commerce from Osmania University, India with a gold medal and is also a CFA and CAIA charterholder.

Sundeep Gantori is the equity analyst responsible for the global technology sector, Asia ex Japan Focus 20 list and Taiwan equity market.

Sundeep joined UBS Global Wealth Management as an equity analyst in February 2007 and his coverage mainly focuses on both global and Asian technology sectors including semiconductors, hardware, internet and software & services. Additionally, Sundeep is also responsible for Asia ex Japan Focus 20, CIO's highest convictions stock ideas in the region and Taiwan equities. Before joining UBS, Sundeep worked as an equity analyst in PCS Securities, an Indian brokerage firm where he was covering the Indian IT & Telecom sectors.

Jerome Bernasconi

UBS Wealth Management, Head Content Distribution APAC, Investment Products & Services

Jerome is based in Singapore and leads the Content Distribution team for APAC. He creates investment content, advises on asset allocation and provides investment ideas across asset classes in a portfolio context.

Jerome has been in the banking industry for 22 years including 8 years in Singapore. Prior to relocating to Singapore, Jerome worked for 10 years as an investment advisor and product specialist for UBS Wealth Management in Geneva, Switzerland. He is experienced with investments and products across asset classes as well as portfolio solutions. Jerome holds a CFA charter.