What’s going on with share markets!
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What’s going on with share markets!
Oct 26, 2022 Episode 232
Stuart Wemyss

Calendar year to date, the stock and bond markets have produced some of the worst returns on record, which is unusual because bonds and stocks are typically negatively correlated. In fact, this has only happened two times over the past 96 years, as illustrated in this chart. Even gold, commodities and property have lost value this year. It’s really been a horrible market for investment returns. 

I discuss the key risks that have driven markets lower below, as well as highlighting the investment opportunities that exist as a result. 

How high will interest rates rise and for how long? 

I think the biggest factor that is creating the most uncertainty is what the terminal cash rate may be i.e., how high will central banks have to raise rates to reduce inflation. I don’t think the market will begin any sustainable recovery until the terminal cash rate becomes clear and ascertainable.

If the terminal cash rate turns out to be lower than what the market has priced in, then it is possible that markets could rebound strongly. In Australia, the market has priced in a terminal cash rate of 4.0%, so it’s entirely possible that the market has over-sold, since no economists expect the RBA to raise rates by another 1.40%. For example, the big 4 banks forecast the terminal cash rate to be 3.1-3.6% which is an increase by another 0.5% to 1.0% over the coming 6 to 9 months. 

In the US, its equivalent cash rate is currently set at 3.00-3.25% and the market is expecting a terminal rate of between 4.5-5.0%, so it seems the US Fed Reserve has a lot more work to do than the RBA does in Australia. 

My point is that until we see successive data that confirms inflation has begun returning to normal levels, the market cannot accurately price in an accurate terminal cash rate. 

Will there be a recession? If so, how deep? 

In response to rising inflation, central banks have hiked interest rates faster that anytime in history. 

Normally, when a central bank wants to tighten monetary policy, it does so less aggressively so that it can measure the impact that higher rates is having on the economy. This more measured approach allows central bankers to adjust their approach to ensure it doesn’t raise rates too far and cause a recession i.e., slow economic growth too much. 

Given most economic

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