Eq: Total Market
Wealthy investors are hitting a pandemic low in terms of optimism around the market as concerns flare up surrounding volatility. The latest survey by UBS shows that inflation and geopolitics are weighing down investor sentiment regarding optimism. The majority of investors are concerned most regarding inflation and are shifting into cash holdings and the inflation concerns have them weary about where to invest. Under a third said they would increase market holdings if there was a 10% blow-off. Still, investors show a desire to invest in long-term assets such as renewables and smart mobility.
Finsum: Keeping a long eye is a smart play right now but older investors are in a difficult position regarding the market.
Dems are including a 1% tax on share buybacks in Biden’s climate and tax bill which is being pitched as an inflation bill. The tax was included to get Arizona Senator Krysten Sinema on board with the legislation. Most analysts say this will raise tensions with Wallstreet as investors will be apprehensive about the impact immediately and what it opens the door to moving forward. Many companies have recently engaged in massive buybacks using the excess profits to reinvest in their own companies. Experts say this could generate a lot of revenue, more than the carried interest which is expected to bring in $14 billion.
Finsum: Buy back boogeyman at it again. This legislation stops companies from doing the most responsible thing they can with excess cash.
Emerging markets are constrained by a number of factors. The U.S.’s rapidly increasing interest rates are putting pressure on emerging market sovereign bonds. While seasoned investors in emerging markets are no stranger to volatility; these days it is coming from too many angles. War in Ukraine, political instability, oil prices, continuing covid-19 related problems, and currency pressures are all coming at once. This has caused a $52 billion dollar to pull according to JPMorgan. All of these pressures increase the spread in yields for emerging market bonds, and the rapid ballooning of these yields has sent their prices off a cliff. Many emerging markets are also facing real fiscal problems. However, there are resilient larger EM economies that can take the brunt of the shocks.
Finsum: If the global economy slows it could be detrimental to EM which can be export-dependent in an already volatile time.
The market is seeing some of the highest volatility since the pandemic and before that, you have to go back to the taper tantrum, but how should investors respond? While the most obvious answer is to ‘buy the dip’, the question remains where. Investors should look to industries whose fundamentals haven’t shifted in the most recent months or are less susceptible to the ongoing volatility shifts. This value tilt means leaning towards financials and commodities. Moreover, investors should steer clear of those exactly susceptible to current volatility spikes. Technology and emerging markets are easy stay-aways because inflationary pressures are going to hurt growth stocks and supply constraints will bottle up developing economies for the foreseeable future.
Finsum: More advanced hedging strategies should be considered in equity markets given the volatility, but still tilt toward value.
Volatility ETFs reached infamy in the 2018 Volmageddon episode, but these formerly destructive ETFs making a Lazzarath-like comeback. Both the SVIX and UVIX delivered record style gains amid inflows due to market gyrations UVIX closed 37% higher but was up 42% in mid-day trading. The wild up and downs came in response to the Fed meeting and a tanking S&P the following day. Advisors are steering investors toward both UVIX and SVIX because this is exactly where these products thrive. However, there is still a substantial risk as investors have suffered greatly in the past from these products and the ‘juice’ they are receiving could be detrimental on the downside.
Finsum: This is unprecedented volatility in the post-GFC, and it could continue until inflation is under control.
Model portfolios are a great tool to increase flexibility, growth, and optimization, and Principal is launching almost 40 new products in response to demand. Jill Brown, director of their U.S. Wealth Platform says they will give solutions that are easy to manage and deliver results to clients. These portfolios will leverage the full power of their fintech platform to help advisors hit their goals. The end products will include mutual funds and ETFs and will allow clients to personalize their portfolios with different risk-based suites. Capital appreciation will be the main goal of the three of the core suites, while total returns will be the main goal of the last suite.
Finsum: Third-party model portfolios give tailored solutions, and make customization easier than ever.