As it does every month, Bank of America conducts a survey of fund managers with nearly $900 billion AUM. Its results in the May edition seem very interesting, indicating the risks and actions of institutional investors.
According to the survey, investors appear to be hoarding cash as the outlook for global economic growth falls to an all-time low and fears of stagflation increase. Cash holdings among investors have reached their highest level since September 2001, according to the report. A survey this month of investors managing $872 billion also found that hawkish central banks are seen as the biggest risk to financial markets. A global recession came in second, and concerns about stagflation rose to their highest level since 2008.
The findings could show an uninspiring outlook for global equities, which are already on track for their longest weekly losing streak since the global financial crisis, as central banks turn off the tap on money at a time of stubbornly high inflation.
The BofA report said the stock market may be in a bear market, but the final lows have not yet been reached. More interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve are still expected, and the market is not yet in full capitulation.
The BofA survey also found that technology stocks are under the most pressure since 2006. Overall, investors were most attuned to holding cash, and are least inclined to go for: emerging market stocks, eurozone stocks and bonds at the moment.
The report also found that the so-called most crowded trades at the moment are long positions on oil (28%), short positions on U.S. Treasury bonds (25%), long on technology stocks (14%), and long on bitcoin (8%). According to the respondents, the value to which the S&P 500 index would have to fall for the Fed to start refraining from further monetary policy tightening falls at the level of 3529, i.e. about 12% below the current level.
Daniel Kostecki, Director of the Polish branch of Conotoxia Ltd. (Forex service)
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