Overseas markets are looking more attractive to advisors, despite last year's turmoil in the sector and client concerns.
Advisors said that overseas markets offered potential tactical opportunities, according to the latest Global Asset Allocation Tracker. Our monthly barometer of where advisors are allocating assets on behalf of clients uses a baseline of 50, and surveyed 291 advisors.
Advisors cited the seemingly high valuations of U.S. stocks and the European Central Bank's bond-buying program for going overseas. "The U.S. made a similar move and it helped our economy, so this should help with global allocations," one wealth manager says of the ECB's plans.
Another advisor pointed to high-equity valuations and plummeting oil prices as reasons to rebalance portfolios. "As we feel U.S. equities as a whole have become officially pricy from our viewpoint, we are once again looking off U.S. shores for value," this advisor said. "As to internal factors, combining collapsing oil prices with this overpriced scenario, we feel, may lead to a major collapse in U.S. equities in 2015."
Some clients, however, were not as enthusiastic about putting their money into foreign markets.
"Recovery seems far away for the international markets, and clients are not confident of an imminent upturn," an advisor says. One wealth manager, facing similar skepticism from clients, was not deterred, reminding "clients of the need to be diversified globally, despite foreign market performance in 2014."