by Philippe ITHURBIDE,
Global Head of Research, Chief Economist at Amundi

It is my pleasure to present to you a compendium of the astute observations and shrewd opinions shared at the 2016 Amundi World Investment Forum, Megatrends: The Path Forward. It is my sincere hope that this book of rich insights shared over the two-day event will provide you not only compelling answers to some of today’s most pressing investment questions, but offer you a clear view on how to move forward in the complex economic landscape of today – and tomorrow.

And moving forward is precisely what we aim to do in hosting the Amundi World Investment Forum. This annual gathering of the most influential and innovative thinkers in our industry, along with more than 400 of our clients and partners from over 50 countries, is proof positive of our dedication to advancing the conversation so that, together, we may tackle head-on economic trends and the collisions between them, how they are informing the economic and investment context, and how they impact you.

Indeed, Megatrends, those long-term economic and social tendencies that are shaping business and society today, represent significant implications for all investors — volatile oil prices; the omnipresent threat of terrorism; skewed demographics; political change and upheaval in the US, Europe and around the world; the rise of digital; the imminent threat of climate change. In uncertain times such as these, where can investors find their anchors? It is now more important than ever that we get the fundamentals of investing right. That means we, as your trusted partner, must understand your goals, your means and your risk appetite. And the number one fundamental that must never be underestimated is the importance of asset allocation.

In order to take a deep dive into these Megatrends and their impact on investment decisions, this year we welcomed distinguished academic leaders and authorities in the fields of Economics, Finance and Psychology, including Daniel Kahneman, Jeremy Rifkin, Jim Rogers and Jeremy Siegel. In addition, an international spectrum of Amundi experts and special guests shared their views on asset allocation in these difficult-to-navigate waters: Arundhati Bhattacharya, Olivier Blanchard and Florence Eid-Oakden discussed the economic forces placing a strain on emerging economies and the US alike, while Amin Rajan addressed asset and risk allocation. Michael Wyrsch tackled the liquidity question, and Leslie Teo spoke on factor investing. Mark Fawcett and Shahril Ridza Ridzuan discussed how to broaden the investment universe.

On Day 1 of the Forum, the audience heard from our speakers on how we must Tackle the Challenges Ahead. What became clear throughout the discussions is that a robust strategy is needed to meet the coming economic and social shifts. The second day addressed how we must Rethink Investment Fundamentals. Simply put, in this new world, many of the old rules simply no longer apply. As your investment “coach”, we put together this forum to accompany you through this era of ambiguity and unpredictability. And we will continue to accompany you, day in and day out, by offering you concrete advice and opinions based on solid research and thoughtful insight into the longterm issues and trends that impact you.