Pacific Basin equities views mixed
SHEEL KOHLI in London
Fund managers around the world hold sharply contrasting views on how they will invest in Pacific Basin equities this month.
In the monthly Merrill Lynch/Gallup survey of fund managers - who together control US$4.27 trillion of assets - they appear to have widely diverging views on the way markets in the region will perform this month.
Japanese fund managers, controlling $630 billion, seemed to have the most changeable outlook, with 19 per cent planning to increase their regional holdings, compared with 20 per cent in January.
However, only 7 per cent were bullish in a three-month view of Pacific Basin equities, compared with 15 per cent last month.
For the year, 23 per cent were bullish, against 40 per cent.
US fund managers were among the more negative on Pacific Basin equities, with only 21 per cent planning to increase holdings, compared with 37 per cent in January.
Similarly, on a three-month outlook, bulls outnumbered bears by only 28 per cent this month, compared with 48 per cent last month, although 57 per cent were bullish for the year, compared with 54 per cent last month.
In Europe, the view taken was almost opposite that of US counterparts. About 22 per cent planned to increase their holdings in Pacific Basin equities, compared with 13 per cent last month.
Furthermore, 34 per cent, against 21 per cent, were bulls on a three-month view, and 46 per cent, against 34 per cent last month, were positive for the year.
British fund managers named Hong Kong as 'the preferred equity market' (in the region) with 36 per cent of respondents citing it as their favourite.
For the region, the percentage of net buyers was virtually flat with 11 per cent planning to increase holdings, compared with 10 per cent last month.
On a three-month view, bulls outnumbered bears by 33 per cent, compared with 25 per cent last month.
Meanwhile, 58 per cent were positive on the region for the year, compared with 53 per cent in January.