Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Hopeful Signs in Tees Valley>

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Hopeful Signs in Tees Valley>

Article excerpt

2009: FIGHTBACK or Failure?

House prices will fall by a further 15%, unemployment will spiral to more than two million, the FTSE will plunge below 3,500 and business failures will reach record levels.

Or shares will rally sharply, banks and commercial property will spark a sustained economic fightback and cheap bargains will send consumers flooding back to the high street.

If the market has bottomed out, the latter view could hold some credence and recovery, not recession, will be the "r" word on everybody's lips.

But if the slide continues, 2009 could bear the most painful scars of last year's financial crash.

Anthony Bolton, one of the City's best-known stockpickers and fund managers, is firmly entrenched in the optimistic camp, reportedly claiming that commercial property could kick-start a sustained bull run.

Before anyone questions his sanity, Mr Bolton apparently delivered average annual returns of around 20% during his time as manager of Fidelity's Special Situations fund, compared with 7. …

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