Trump agenda has advisers bullish on U.S. equities

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Advisers boosted allocations to U.S. equities and pulled back on bonds in the face of rising interest rates and uncertainties around future economic and trade policy.

The latest Global Asset Allocation Tracker shows allocations to domestic equities reached a record high since the survey started in June 2013. The tracker, which polled 330 advisers, also showed a slight increase in allocations to global equities.

The fund manager reported $277 billion in new money to its U.S. mutual funds and ETFs last year, while Fidelity and Franklin reported some of the largest outflows.
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Allocations to bonds remained in negative territory largely due to anticipated changes in interest rates, according to advisers. Global Asset Allocation Tracker readings below 50 indicate decreases.

Clients have been on something of an emotional roller coaster in recent months, says one adviser. "In November, a few clients were spooked by possible market downside scenarios so there was no additional buying of equities, especially early November. However, by December they were buying back into the rally," the adviser says.

Another adviser finds clients have become more "bullish" on U.S. markets in light of President-elect Trump's perceived pro-business, pro-tax cuts political agenda.

A planner, explaining the move to U.S. stocks and away from global equities, says that the Trump administration "seems positive for U.S. stocks at the expense of other countries."

Indeed, several wealth managers also report that they are pulling back on global equities, particularly emerging markets, in anticipation of major shifts in international trade under the new Trump administration.

Yet one adviser took a contrarian position with an eye to current stock prices, saying that "we feel markets are starting to become overvalued."

The adviser adds: "We have increased our cash positions in an anticipation of a market selloff."

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