As 2010 sets in, Invesco Perpetual's leading fund managers comment on what's in store for markets around the world.
On the prospects of Global Equities for 2010, chief investment officer at Invesco, Bob Yerbury says: "Even after the recovery, aggregate world equity valuations are still attractive."
Commenting on the reasons behind this, he adds: "One important reason is that institutional investors, in particular, have shifted from equities to fixed income and alternatives assets. I think 2010 could well see some rebalancing of portfolios back towards equities."
On whether corporate bonds can repeat the strong performance seen in 2009 this year, Paul Read, co-head of fixed income at Invesco Perpetual comments: "Such a strong performance is unrepeatable in 2010. We think we will now enter a period in which bonds do indeed give 'bond like returns'."
Adding, "We do still see value in some sectors – bank debt offers good value. But, certainly, there can be no repeat of the strong gains of 2009."
On the prospects for Asian equity markets in 2010, Stuart Parks, head of Asian Equities said: "The rise in Asia Pacific (ex-Japan) equity markets in 2009 reflected a recovery from the oversold position of early 2009, easy global liquidity conditions and a recognition of the structural strengths of the region.
"Even after that rise, however, valuations are still reasonable," he adds.
"Given that valuation and earnings backdrop, the fundamental basis for continued market appreciation looks intact on a two to three year view, but the progress of equity markets, especially in Asia, is never smooth and there are three principle risks which I see for 2010," he warns.
With regards to emerging markets and the prospects for Brazil since it has become investment grade and will host the Olympics in 2016, Dean Newman, head of emerging markets at Invesco Perpetual said:
"Domestically, one of the most important transitions is from a high inflation and interest rate environment to one where both of these are low and stable.
"For companies, the ability to obtain finance at low long-term interest rates is a completely new development, which can drastically transform their financial structure. It allows a better balance between debt and equity finance, for example."
On Brazil's prospects he adds: "It is fair to say that these changes are still at an early stage. That means we remain convinced of the long-term strength of Brazil's equity markets.
Adding, "In the short term however, there are some warning signs. The weakness of the dollar during 2009 has started to put pressure on Brazilian exporters; and there is some uncertainty surrounding this year's presidential elections. But we would see these as temporary uncertainties in a long-term structural process of change."
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