This year’s global equity rally is unlikely to survive the end of the ECB’s liquidity injections, warns HSBC.
World stocks have jumped 10 percent since the start of 2012, emerging markets are up 15 percent and the index of top European stocks has gained 8 percent. These gains, HSBC says, are almost entirely down to the European Central Bank’s end-December refinancing operation, or LTRO, that injected $500 billion to ease banks’ liquidity worries. The tentative improvement in the U.S. and global growth picture along with beaten-down stock valuations added only limited ammunition to the rally, the bank says.
Just a month and half into 2012, emerging local currency bonds have already returned 9 percent, one of best performing asset classes. But the rally has further to go, says J.P. Morgan which runs the most widely used emerging debt indices. The bank is now predicting its benchmark local currency debt index, the GBI-EM, to end the year with returns of 16 percent, upping its original expectation for 11.9 percent.
There are several reasons for this bullishnesss. JPM’s latest client survey reveals investors’ positioning is still neutral, meaning there is potential for more gains. Cash inflows to EM local debt have been dwarfed this year by investments into dollar bonds, considered a safer, albeit lower-yielding asset than locally issued bonds. So when (and if) euro zone uncertainties abate, some of this cash is likely to make the switch.
LONDON, Feb 15 (Reuters) – The world’s top yoghurt
maker Danone now sells half its goods in emerging markets, and
from beer to holidays, Europe’s consumer industry depends ever
more heavily on the rising wealth of Brazilians, Russians,
Indians and Chinese.
Danone and Heineken, the world’s
third-largest brewer, are two of the most exposed consumer
companies to sluggish European economies, but both targeted
emerging markets to overcome increasingly gloomy home markets in
their annual results on Wednesday.
This year’s renewed euphoria over emerging markets has bypassed some places. One such corner is Belize, a country sandwiched between Mexico and Guatemala, which many fear is gearing up for a debt default. There is a chance this will happen as early as next week
Belize is a small country with just 330,000 people but back in 2007, it issued a $550 million bond on international markets. Known locally as a superbond for its large size (relative to the country’s economy), the issue earned Belize a spot on JP Morgan’s EMBI Global index of emerging market bonds.
Could Brazil be on the cusp of adopting a Turkish-style monetary policy, J.P. Morgan analysts ask.
Indonesia cut rates on Thursday but the move was unexpected and possibly the last for some time. Brazil has also signalled that rate cuts will continue. But South Korea and Poland held rates steady this week and made hawkish noises. Peru and Chile will probably do the same.
Emerging market bonds denominated in local currencies enjoyed a record January last month with JP Morgan’s GBI-EM Global index returning around 8 percent in dollar terms. Year-to-date, returns are over 9.5 percent.
This is mainly down to spectacular gains on emerging currencies such as the Mexican peso and Turkish lira which have surged 7-10 percent against the dollar and euro this year. Analysts say the currency component of this year’s returns has been around 7 percent, meaning any portfolio hedged for currency risk would have garnered returns of just 2.5 percent.
An interesting take on GDP stats and those who make the predictions. An analysis of economic growth forecasts for several emerging markets over 2006-2010 has led Renaissance Capital economist Mert Yildiz to conclude that analysts of Turkish origin (and he is one) tend to be:
a) far more pessimistic about their country’s economic growth outlook than the foreigners, and
Doomsayers have been prophesying Turkey’s economic boom to deflate into bust for many months now. The recent revival in positive investor sentiment worldwide ar has helped silence some voices. Others say it is a matter of time.
Data on Friday showed annual inflation accelerated from last year’s 3-year highs to 10.6 percent in January. It is likely to remain elevated at least until May, analysts predict. And trade data released this week indicate Turkey will likely have finished last year with a current account gap of around 10 percent of GDP last year — the biggest of any major developing economy. All this appears to indicate that the central bank will have to keep monetary policy tight and might even have to even raise rates, should the current resurgence in risk appetite fade. But rather optimistically, the government is still forecasting 4 percent growth this year. The IMF says 0.4 percent is more likely. A report today by Capital Economics, entitled “Turkish boom hits the buffers”, says recession is a cinch.
LONDON (Reuters) – Sovereign wealth funds are likely to enjoy returns of 5-7 percent this year as they boost investments in high-yielding assets such as infrastructure, property and emerging markets while keeping some in safe government debt, JP Morgan Asset Management says.
Patrick Thomson, global head of sovereigns at the asset manager, told Reuters in an interview on Thursday that volatility and the lack of liquidity in emerging markets remain a concern for the giant $4 trillion industry which invests windfall revenues for future generations.