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Market views on-the-go
Tap into our global resources to analyse the financial markets around the world
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House Views across asset classes
Overweight
Underweight
Neutral
AS AT 26 APRIL 2024
Display All
Equity
  • North America
  • Europe ex-UK
  • United Kingdom (UK)
  • Japan
  • Asia ex-Japan
Bonds
  • DM IG Government bonds
  • DM IG Corporate bonds
  • DM HY Corporate bonds
  • EM USD Government bonds
  • EM LCY Government bonds
  • Asia USD bonds
Commodities
  • Crude Oil
  • Gold
Alternatives
    Multi-Asset
      Equity – at a glance
      26 APRIL 2024
      • Short-term volatility can create buying opportunities. We are Overweight US equities. US macro data has been solid, offsetting the less supportive Fed outlook. US companies continue to display strong pricing power, resulting in solid net margins. We are also Overweight Japan equities. The earnings outlook is improving, ROE is rising and valuations are still attractive. The hawkish Fed is soothing some concerns about the risk of a significant rise in JPY against the USD.
      • We are Neutral Asia ex-Japan equities. India is our biggest Overweight. Its economy is growing the fastest among key markets within the region, and its companies have strong ROEs, justifying its expensive valuation. Korea and Taiwan are our two other Overweight positions. The tailwinds from semiconductor and AI-themes justify their heavy positioning. We are Neutral China equities. There is low expectations on the macro data, and positioning is very light – these counteract against deflationary risks and issues with its property markets. We are Neutral China onshore versus offshore. Lastly, we are Underweight ASEAN, which is overly defensive in a growth environment.
      • We are upgrading UK equities to Neutral. A higher-yield environment help value sectors. Euro area equities is our Underweight. Cheap valuation reflects weak EPS growth. Consumer confidence remains weak, and service inflation remains sticky.
      North America equities – Preferred holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Strong earnings growth amid robust consumption

      The bearish case:

      • Impact of high interest rates
      Europe ex-UK equities – Less Preferred holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Inexpensive relative valuations

      The bearish case:

      • Still-weak cyclical & structural growth outlook
      UK equities – Core holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Attractive valuations, dividend yield

      The bearish case:

      • Stagflation risks
      • Political uncertainty
      Japan Equities – Preferred holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Reasonable valuations
      • Rising dividends/share buybacks

      The bearish case:

      • Expected JPY strength
      Asia ex-Japan equities – Core holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Earnings rebound
      • China policy support

      The bearish case:

      • China structural growth concerns
      Bonds – at a glance
      26 APRIL 2024
      • We have a Neutral allocation to Developed Market (DM) Investment Grade (IG) government bonds. The rise in US government bond yields has further improved the risk-reward balance, although upside inflation surprises are headwinds that are likely to keep the Fed on hold for longer than previously anticipated. We revise our 3-month target and 12-month target of the benchmark 10-year US government bond yield higher to 4.50-4.75% and 4.0%, respectively.
      • Higher government bond yields have naturally pushed DM IG corporate bond yields higher. However, a low yield premium over underlying government bonds, relative to history, leads us to maintain a Neutral allocation here as well. The same rationale is extended to DM High Yield (HY) corporate bonds, where we also have a Neutral allocation.
      • In Emerging Markets (EM), we have upgraded USD government bonds to an Overweight. EM fundamentals continue to strengthen, with fiscal balances improving to pre-pandemic levels. We view the current yield and asset class sensitivity to US bond yields as attractive. Separately, the differentiation in fiscal policies and EM currency volatility have led us to have an Underweight allocation to EM local currency government bonds. We remain tactically bullish on INR-denominated bonds.
      • In Asia, a mixed economic backdrop among regional countries leads us to have a Neutral Asia USD bonds allocation. Within this, we have a slight tilt towards Asia HY bonds over Asia IG bonds.
      Developed Market Investment Grade government bonds – Core holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • High credit quality
      • Attractive yields

      The bearish case:

      • High sensitivity to monetary policy
      Developed Market Investment Grade corporate bonds – Core holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • High credit quality
      • Sensitive to falling yields

      The bearish case:

      • Elevated valuations
      Developed Market High Yield corporate bonds – Core holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Attractive yield
      • Low rate sensitivity

      The bearish case:

      • Elevated valuations
      • Sensitive to growth
      Emerging Market USD government bonds – Preferred holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Attractive yield
      • Sensitive to US rates

      The bearish case:

      • EM credit quality
      • Election/political risks
      Emerging Market Local currency government bonds – Less Preferred holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Attractive yield
      • Room for policy rate cuts

      The bearish case:

      • USD strength
      • Election/political risks
      Asia USD bonds – Core holding
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Moderate yield
      • Low volatility

      The bearish case:

      • China property contagion risk
      • Elevated IG valuations
      Commodities – at a glance
      26 APRIL 2024
      • We revise higher our 3-month gold forecast to USD 2,300/oz and continue to have a Neutral allocation in our portfolios. The yellow metal defied rising real yields to scale fresh all-time highs on the back of continued strong official sector and physical demand, particularly in China. Tactical positioning has also risen as investors added gold to hedge against the heightened geopolitical risks and reflationary signs. In our view, the recent price action suggests that real yields are less of a headwind at least for now. Put together, we see continued resiliency in the precious metal. Over the longer term, while we still expect the next leg of rally to be driven by rate cuts, our expectations of delayed rate cuts and the reduced role of the real yields mean that the gains are likely to be limited. Therefore, our 12-month forecast is only slightly higher at USD 2,325/oz.
      • We expect WTI oil to remain volatile around USD 89/bbl in the near term on tighter demand-supply. Crude oil prices have receded from the 5-month high posted during the initial Iran attack on Israel. It appears that the geopolitical risk premium is easing, but oil prices could spike on any bad tidings. The risk of further escalation and even a broader fallout, while low, is not negligible. Furthermore, the second-order effects of the conflict, such as the ramp-up of sanctions on Iranian crude oil, could exert upward pressure on oil prices. Elsewhere, there are downside supply risks lingering in the background. Demand, on the other hand, is creeping up in recent months. In the long run, the focus would return to the longer-term demand-supply forces, which we assess to be finely balanced, fading the WTI oil to around USD 82/bbl.
      Crude Oil
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Resilient DM economies
      • Stable demand growth in Asia
      • Supply reduction from geopolitical conflicts
      • OPEC+ supply cuts
      • Low inventories
      • US shale underinvestment
      • US SPR refill

      The bearish case:

      • Tight monetary policies and resulting growth slowdown
      • Redirection of Russian oil flows
      • Easing of sanctions against Venezuela
      • Significant global spare capacity
      • OPEC+ supply discipline
      • Lower demand from energy transition
      Gold
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Portfolio hedge
      • Central bank demand

      The bearish case:

      • Resilient USD
      Alternatives – at a glance
      26 APRIL 2024

      The bullish case:

      • Diversifier characteristics

      The bearish case:

      • Equity, corporate bond volatility
      Multi-Asset – at a glance
      26 APRIL 2024
      • Income assets trailed as equity markets soared to record highs. Our Multi-Asset Income (MAI) model allocation has delivered just 2.0% since 27 December 2023 till date, modestly better than most fixed income assets, but lagging the strong performance seen in global equities. Our Underweight to dividend equities hurt as equities have outperformed bonds thus far, while the Overweight allocation to fixed income was negatively impacted by the rise in US government bond yields.
      • Greater probability of a soft landing as economic data continues to surprise on the upside. The recent central bank meetings also suggest DM policymakers are turning more supportive of growth and less concerned about inflation. This suggests a more stable interest rate environment, amid resilient growth, which will likely be positive for both bonds and equity risk assets over the next 6-12 months. For multi-asset income strategies, the reduced risk of an economic downturn can benefit dividend equities and non-core income assets, which have performed well so far into the year.
      • We close our Overweight to fixed income, turning Neutral between bonds and dividend equities this month. The overall yield on our MAI allocation remains at an attractive c.6%, with MAI strategies likely to benefit from a combination of more resilient economic growth and a less uncertain interest rate environment, given the Fed guidance on policy rate direction for 2024.
      FX views (12-month outlook)
      • USD
      • EUR
      • JPY
      • GBP
      • AUD
      • ASIA EX-JAPAN
      28 MARCH 2024
      The bullish case:
      + Safe-haven demand
      + US exceptionalism
      The bearish case:
      – Dovish Fed
      – Non-US growth
      – Expensive valuation
      28 MARCH 2024
      The bullish case:
      + Rising real rates as EU inflation falls
      The bearish case:
      – Weak growth
      – Energy dependency
      28 MARCH 2024
      The bullish case:
      + Falling real yields at inflation rises
      The bearish case:
      – Further BoJ rate hikes
      – Safe haven
      28 MARCH 2024
      The bullish case:
      + Hawkish BoE due to sticky inflation
      The bearish case:
      – Recession risk
      – Consumption weakness
      28 MARCH 2024
      The bullish case:
      + Terms of trade
      + China growth rebound
      The bearish case:
      – Capped commodity prices
      – Risk-off sentiment
      28 MARCH 2024
      USD/CNH
      The bullish case:
      + Geopolitics
      + Unfavourable rate differentials

      USD/SGD
      The bullish case:
      + SGD vulnerable to weak global growth
      + Oil price surge due to geopolitical events

      USD/INR
      The bullish case:
      + RBI may bolster FX reserves
      + Risk premia due to 2024 elections

      USD/MYR
      The bullish case:
      + Relatively low FX reserve
      + Increased commodity price risks

      USD/KRW
      The bullish case:
      + Vulnerability to global growth and trade
      + Reliance on USD and CNY trend

      The bearish case:
      – China growth rebound
      – Capital inflows


      The bearish case:
      – Resilient domestic growth
      – CNY’s rebound


      The bearish case:
      – Lower oil price to ease current account deficit
      – Strong growth; inflows


      The bearish case:
      – Reversal in local dollarisation trends
      – Resilient GDP growth


      The bearish case:
      – Export growth and tourism inflows
      – Cheap value; inflows

      Videos
      Passing Showers
      We believe the equity market pullback and the rise in bond yields have created an opportunity to add exposure to diversified Foundation allocations.

      Higher-than-expected US inflation has been a key market concern, but most scenarios point to temporary weakness in markets as we expect disinflationary trends to return.

      Within Foundation allocations, we continue to be Overweight equities, with a preference for the US and Japan, and Neutral bonds. Gold performed well as a short-term hedge, but may be due for a breather.

      We also add Europe energy sector equities and South Korean stocks as Buy ideas within Opportunistic allocations.
      CIO Bitez
      Read Less
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