The coming year will likely see a very similar set of results as the previous year. While the Federal Reserve has announced the tapering of its bond buying program, it has not yet announced the end of the program and the uncertainty is likely to continue to plague the bond and commodity markets as well as emerging market stocks. Main Market equities are likely to still be the best place to have funds in the coming year, however returns are not likely to be as high as in 2013. However, we do still expect to see returns over 9% in the coming year.
Gold and commodities are likely to continue to see price falls and Gold could eventually stabilize around the $800 mark.
One key driver that may emerge in 2014 is substantial drops in world oil prices. As the US shale revolution continues to strengthen we are also likely to see many key producers come back on line. New pipelines in Iraq as well as a return to production in Libya and the dropping of Iranian sanctions could see a substantial increase in oil production. A move to a consumption based economy in China as well as increasing fuel efficiency in Europe and North America mean that demand is unlikely to rise at the same rate as supply. Many experts predict a drop in the price of oil in the USA to nearly $80 a barrel.
This drop in oil prices will result in two key investment trends. Firstly, a drop in oil prices will allow central banks to keep monetary policy looser for longer. This is likely to have a positive impact on equity and property prices. However, areas flirting with deflation in the Eurozone and Japan may experience further problems with deflation if they are unable or unwilling to reflate their economies fast enough. These deflationary pressures may be further exacerbated by the vast increase in Chinese production over the past few years.
The second trend that is likely to emerge is a rise in the importance of western consumers. Oil prices have risen substantially since the end of the 1990s and western consumers have borne the full brunt of this. Since the late 1990s median incomes have not risen in most western economies when adjusted for inflation. This is one of the longest periods of the past century when average incomes have not increased. Falling oil prices are likely to see an increase in consumption in key economies from the USA to Europe.
The best strategies to take advantage of this trend are likely to be the following:
- Buying Transport Stocks especially airlines and mid-range cars manufacturers.
- Buying retail stocks especially clothing and middle market retail.
- Selling or shorting energy stocks especially smaller companies and those reliant on exploration.
- Shorting oil prices and gold.
- Non luxury residential property is also likely to do well in this environment although it may take some time for this to filter down to the property market.
|Currency Outlook 2014|
|GBP/USD||1.60 – 167|
|EUR/USD||1.29 – 1.38|
|AUD/USD||0.90 – 0.79|
|GBP/MYR||5.40 – 6.10|
|USD/MYR||3.30 – 3.60|
In the coming year the Malaysian ringgit is likely to weaken considerably. The Australian dollar is also likely to continue to fall. GBP and USD are likely to be the two best performers of next year.
Main Market Equity
We expect to see gains of around 9% in 2014
Corporate and Government Bonds
We expect continuing drops until at least the middle of 2014
Most hard commodities will continue to fall in 2014. Oil may do particularly badly.
Gold prices will continue to fall for the next year and will likely drop below $1000 in 2014.
Property in the UK and the USA will continue to rise. Most Asian markets will perform poorly in 2014.
Emerging Market Equity
Emerging markets are likely to drop further in the first half of 2014
Emerging Market Bonds
Emerging market bonds will continue to drop for the first half of 2014 but may experience growth in the second half.
I hope that you have enjoyed reading this post.
Kuala Lumpur : Malaysia