December 2018

Posted by Anton Murray Consulting on . Posted in 2018

2018 has proved to be a big year for financial services. The new year is sure to usher in many changes to the industry, but that’s not to say that 2018 has been stagnant. We’re taking a look back at some influential events from the past year and considering where that will take us in the year ahead.

Low global interest rates made for an interesting landscape. While the RBA and the PBC didn’t make a move, the Fed, the BoE and the BOC have started to make small moves towards higher rates. Investors aren’t responding in unison, nor have they all had the same approach. The October sell-off of the Dow Jones was viewed by some as an inevitable adjustment to overvaluation, but the effects were felt globally. US politics once again had an impact on confidence across global markets. A looming trade war between the US and China made everyone nervous, and the midterms proved that people are becoming increasingly wary of Trump’s government.

Brexit is scheduled for March 29 next year and although Theresa May has been working towards a smooth transition, negotiations have been rocky. While we’ve all had time to adjust to Brexit and the 21-month transition period will offer further time, it’s certainly going to impact global banks working across Europe.

Closer to home, the Australian banking royal commission has dominated news stories and discussions on financial services for months. While we won’t know the final decisions and changes to be implemented until well into next year, there have been some hints. Changes to commission structures, and boutique, less regulated firms are sure to be centre stage. Undoubtedly many businesses in the industry will feel the ramifications and it’s certain to be an interesting time.

We’re definitely in for an exciting 2019 and we wish all our clients and candidates a fantastic holiday season and great new year. We look forward to continuing to build relationships across Sydney, Melbourne, Singapore and Hong Kong in 2019. As always, please reach out to our team if we can help in any way.

November 2018

Posted by Anton Murray Consulting on . Posted in 2018

The race that stops a nation has quickly come around again! In its 157th year, one of the richest turf races in the world is set to kick off next Tuesday. Whether you’re at Flemington or Randwick or watching from a pub or restaurant from any of our four locations, there’s guaranteed to be plenty of action. Restaurants all over Sydney and Melbourne are putting on their best lunches, everyone will don their spring florals and you can be sure there will be plenty of revelry on the day.

Superstar mare Winx won’t be racing but there are plenty of other names on the field to keep an eye on. Yucatan Ire is the horse to nab in the office sweeps – he’s the favourite of punters. Magic Circle and Cross Counter aren’t far behind so you have plenty of options if you are chasing a trifecta. Sam Smith will be performing at Flemington before the start of the race and plenty of other venues will have DJs and live music for the day. Fashion stakes are high both in the office and at the races, so get your fascinators out for what is sure to be another year of fun!

October 2018

Posted by Anton Murray Consulting on . Posted in 2018

The financial services industry has been doing a lot of reflection over the last month, as we hit the 10-year anniversary of the Global Financial Crisis. We’re in a very different financial landscape from ten years ago, particularly in Australia. Interest rates are at an unprecedented low, economic growth is trudging along slowly, and inflation is struggling to reach our targets. We’re hardly as well prepared to weather an economic storm now than we were when Lehman Brothers collapsed. It’s a similar story globally as well.

There have been plenty of valid critiques of government and private sector responses to the crash. Many claim that the federal government threw far too much money at the fire. It has also been argued that interest rates were dropped too low and created the housing bubble we’ve experienced in recent years. Questions about banking regulation arose and have come to a peak with the ongoing Australian banking royal commission. Our financial markets and banking systems are becoming more transparent because of those questions, and that’s worthwhile.

People are wary of another crash and rightfully so. At its peak last year, many labelled Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as the subprime mortgage bonds of this decade. They were unfamiliar and made plenty of people a lot of money, but predictably they fell hard. Many feared that the property bubble across Australia in major Australian cities could see similar results to those that we saw a decade ago, and yet in the midst of sinking property prices that doesn’t seem to be the case.

It’s impossibly hard to predict exactly when the next substantial hit to our economy will come and what will trigger it, but experts say another hit is fairly inevitable. It’s all a bit doom and gloom but we’re also living in a time of enormous technical advancements and we’re seeing some huge developments in our industry, so there’s plenty to be excited about too.

September 2018

Posted by Anton Murray Consulting on . Posted in 2018

The 2018 Singapore Grand Prix is on this weekend and is sure to be a phenomenal race. With Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel only 30 points apart, F1 fans will be keeping a close eye on the results. If you’re lucky enough to be in Singapore, we’ve rounded up a few of the best things to do and the best places to watch the race, if you’re not lucky enough to be headed to the track.

It’s hard to go past the various restaurants and bars in Marina Bay Sands for watching the race – they have plenty of dining specials over the weekend if you’re entertaining clients or guests, and the Cé La Vi SkyBar is always a hit.

For music fans, The Killers and Liam Gallagher are performing on Saturday night, andMartin Garrix and Dua Lipa are taking the stage on Sunday night for the main race. Björn Again are also playing every night for those ABBA fans out there. Sunday night will see a spectacular fireworks event so get your cameras ready.

Following the Verstappen/Alonso/Vettel crash on the first corner last year, spectators will be keeping a lookout for more drama. Tickets are still available so it’s definitely worth getting a good seat if you have the opportunity. The F1 runs Friday through to Sunday.

Anton Murray Consulting is committed to staying up to date with the business and cultural events of our focus locations. Get in touch if you’d like to find out more about our work in Singapore, Hong Kong, Sydney or Melbourne.

August 2018

Posted by Anton Murray Consulting on . Posted in 2018

Increasingly professionals are choosing to tack personal travel on the front or back end of business travel, a concept that has been dubbed “bleisure”. It makes sense – if work is paying for flights, you might as well enjoy a few extra days for personal travel. With that in mind, we’ve picked a few of the best exhibits and attractions happening in our four focus locations this month to inspire some “bleisure” time.

SYDNEY: John Russell at the Art Gallery of NSW: 21 July – 11 November 2018

Dubbed “Australia’s French Impressionist”, John Peter Russell was an Australian artist who ran in the same circles as Vincent van Gogh, Auguste Rodin, Henri Matisse and Claude Monet. Some of the works have never been shown to the public before, and others haven’t been shown in decades. There are works on loan from the Musee d’Orsay and the Harvard Art Museums. If you can’t get an extra day on your trip, pop in on Wednesdays for “Art After Hours” when the gallery is open till 10pm.

SINGAPORE: National Day of Singapore: 9th August 2018

Singapore’s 53rd birthday is on the 9th of August so the whole country will be celebrating. There’ll be plenty to do and see, so simply strolling around the island is a great way to take it all in. A lot of restaurants do special menus for the event so foodies will have plenty to experience. Marina Bay has a fireworks display and Mr Stork is a great place to catch the display. They offer free flowing drinks for $168SGD per person on the night. The National Day Parade is also worth catching and weaves through the city on the day.

MELBOURNE: MoMA at NGV: until 7 October 2018

MoMA at NGV looks at 130 years of Modern Art and is definitely worth checking out. Some of the big names featured include van Gogh, Picasso, Pollock, Cezanne, Dali and Kahlo. The exhibit is split over two sections and works chronologically through the development of modern art, working from van Gogh to the original Space Invaders game. Lines are long so we recommend getting tickets online to skip the queue. If you don’t have a whole day, NGV Friday Nights will let you catch the exhibit after work with acts from the International Jazz Festival in the background.

HONG KONG: Alter Ego Exhibition in Macau: until 9th September 2018

Alexandre Farto, AKA Vhils has curated six individual exhibits for this event in Macau, formally known as the Annual Arts Exhibition between China and Portuguese-Speaking Countries. Each exhibit is spread across the city, moving from The Self, The Other, From Language to Travel, Culture Clash, Globalisation and ending with Alter Ego. Given there’s a lot to see, considering spending a night in Macau to allow yourself to fully take in the culture.

July 2018

Posted by Anton Murray Consulting on . Posted in 2018

Aptitude testing is becoming increasingly prevalent in hiring processes. While each company might use slightly different tests with varying levels of difficulty, it’s important to set yourself up to succeed. Below are a few tips to help you out.

1. Use a good quality computer that isn’t going to freeze or crash during the testing.

2. Make sure you have a good Internet connection that isn’t going to drop out – this could affect the time limit and mean you get through fewer questions.

3. Don’t do the test tired or hungover. Get a good night’s sleep and make sure you feel fresh.

4. Don’t leave the test to the last minute – know when you need to have it completed by and set aside a time where you can be in a good frame of mind with no distractions to ensure the best outcome.

5. If the test is being done in the office of the hiring company, make sure you give yourself plenty of time to arrive, find the building and get settled in.

6. Understand the style and format of the test. Doing a few practice tests is a good way to get a feel for the type of questions you will be asked. GMAT tests can be a good way to prepare for aptitude testing.

7. Don’t freak out if you can’t complete every question – a lot of tests will have hundreds of questions and the idea is just to get through as many as you can. Some tests will deduct marks for incorrect answers so avoid rushing through for the sake of getting more questions done.

8. Be honest in psychometric testing. It’s often a good idea to go with your first answer to the question – don’t second guess yourself. It will be clear to the hiring manager if you’ve tried to provide answers you think they want to hear.

9. If something goes wrong, communicate with the hiring company – more often than not you will be able to retake the test if there was a technical issue.

Final round testing can feel high pressure, but great results can really help you stand out from a pool of candidates who may have similar education and experience.

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