Standard Chartered Bank recently kicked off its series of market outlook events to share with its clients the myriad economic, political and social factors that can influence global and regional markets, and how clients can navigate them.
Over the next few weeks, the bank will reach out to 5,000 clients with over 20 planned events in markets such as Singapore, Hong Kong, India, Dubai, Bahrain, Kenya and Nigeria across Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
Gracing the Singapore event with around 350 clients from its private bank was ESM Goh Chok Tong, former Prime Minister of Singapore, who engaged in a lively fireside chat with Steve Brice. Goh shared his views on topics including how geopolitics could play in the markets, and his outlook for Singapore in 2024.
The bank’s wealth management chief investment office (CIO), led by Steve Brice, group chief investment officer, also presented its house views underpinned by its 2024 Outlook report “Sailing with the wind”. Against a backdrop of continued challenging economic landscape, the bank’s CIO recommends investors to build a SAFE foundation:
Secure your yield: With today’s yield levels being one of the big opportunities in 2023, the team is overweight bonds – including government and high-quality corporate bonds – relative to equities and cash.
Allocate to long-term value: The more immediate opportunity in yield levels should be balanced by exposure to longer-term value, which it primarily sees in Asia ex-Japan equity and bond markets. Within Asia ex-Japan, the team is overweight Chinese equities given their inexpensive valuations and positive catalysts. Another attractive asset class is Asia USD bonds.
Fortify against further surprises: A US recession outlook means investors need to be prepared for downside surprises, and high-quality government bonds can be one such mitigant. Cash and gold are also key portfolio ballasts.
Expand beyond the traditional: With the belief that the unusual rise in stock-bond correlations this year is unlikely to last into the next, demand for relatively uncorrelated assets is likely to sustain. Alternative strategies, such as liquid alternative strategies and private asset classes, can help.
Foo Tian Ong, regional head of South-east Asia and Singapore head of private banking, said: “We are thrilled to kickstart the new year with our flagship global market outlook event for our clients as we look for the bright spots in 2024. Expert insights are important for every investment journey, and we thank our clients for making us their trusted wealth advisor as we navigate through turbulent times, identify investment opportunities, and make strategic decisions based on our client’s goals and risk appetite.”
Re-disseminated by The Asian Banker