BRIC is back but eurozone and Japan shunned

Published March 19th, 2009 - 08:25 GMT

While the U.S. continues to fuel economic optimism, investors have become more bullish about emerging markets, especially China.

Respondents have taken a net overweight position in emerging markets equities for the first time since August 2008. A net 4 percent are overweight the sector compared with net 4 percent being underweight in February. At the same time, commodities have made further gains with the number of investors underweight the asset class falling to a net 6 percent, down from a net 25 percent in January.

“Optimism on growth has been expressed with higher weightings in emerging markets equities and commodities,” said Michael Hartnett. In contrast, investors have further reduced equity investment in the eurozone and Japan. “Investors might look to review their extreme underweight positions in eurozone and Japanese equities if economic data follow growth expectations higher,” Hartnett said.

A net 40 percent of respondents are now underweight eurozone equities and a net 39 percents are underweight Japanese equities.

A total of 213 fund managers, managing a total of US$533 billion, participated in the global survey from March 6 to March 12. A total of 183 managers, managing US$365 billion, participated in the regional surveys. The survey was conducted by Banc of America Securities – Merrill Lynch Research with the help of market research company TNS. Through its international network in more than 50 countries, TNS provides market information services in over 80 countries to national and multi-national organizations. It is ranked as the fourth-largest market information group in the world.

Bank of America

Bank of America is one of the world's largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk-management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving more than 59 million consumer and small business relationships with more than 6,100 retail banking offices, nearly 18,700 ATMs and award-winning online banking with nearly 29 million active users. Following the acquisition of Merrill Lynch on January 1, 2009, Bank of America is among the world's leading wealth management companies and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to more than 4 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients in more than 150 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock is a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Many of the bank's services to corporate and institutional clients are provided through its U.S. and UK subsidiaries, including Banc of America Securities LLC, Banc of America Securities Limited, Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner and Smith Incorporated and Merrill Lynch International. For additional information, visit www.bankofamerica.com.

Merrill Lynch

Merrill Lynch is one of the world's leading wealth management, capital markets and advisory companies, with offices in 40 countries and territories and total client assets of approximately $1.2 trillion at December 26, 2008. As an investment bank, it is a leading global trader and underwriter of securities and derivatives across a broad range of asset classes and serves as a strategic advisor to corporations, governments, institutions and individuals worldwide. Merrill Lynch has approximately 50 percent ownership in BlackRock Inc., one of the world's largest publicly traded investment management companies, with approximately $1.3 trillion in assets under management at December 31, 2008. For more information on Merrill Lynch, please visit www.ml.com. Merrill Lynch was acquired by Bank of America on January 1, 2009.


 


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