Advisers upped allocations to global equities, attracted to what they say are better valuations than can be found in U.S. markets.
It was the highest reading for global equities since November 2015, according to the latest edition of the Global Asset Allocation Tracker, which polled 330 advisers. Planners cited superior valuations in overseas markets, the strong U.S. dollar relative to other currencies and accommodative central policies in other nations.
"Expectations are for growth in Europe as easy-money policies gain traction in their intended effects toward stimulus," an adviser says. Foreign debt has also become more attractive, the adviser says, pointing to anticipations that the U.S. dollar will appreciate further in value.
Wealth managers also say clients were previously reticent to invest in international stocks due to market volatility and global upheaval. Now, however, they've become more bullish.
"I think clients see international developed markets as a value opportunity, while the U.S. market is starting to look long in the tooth," an adviser says. "Emerging markets is an enticing place, except for the volatility of the currencies."
Another adviser says clients remain cautious but are also now looking to up allocations to global equities.
Other advisers, however, dissented, citing concerns about potential volatility overseas. Among their worries: terrorist attacks in European nations, an attempted coup in Turkey and an economic slowdown in China.
"The valuations are attractive internationally, but the uncertainty makes us skeptical still," a planner says.