16th November 2015
Global investors must ensure they are “Fed-ready” before mid December, when the US central bank next meets, the boss of independent financial advice group has urged.
The market now expects that the US Federal Reserve will hike interest rates for the first time in nine years in December.
Stronger than expected employment data in October, where the world’s largest economy added more than a quarter of a million jobs, fueled expectation that a move from near-zero rates will now take place next month.
Nigel Green, deVere CEO and founder, said: “The probability of a 2015 rate hike has been the source of much rumour and speculation for more than a year.
“But most of that is now over, thanks to the recent robust job numbers and a reported 2.5 per cent increase in wage growth in the previous 12 months. We’re as confident as we can be that the Fed will tighten policy on December 17.
“Holding rates at near-zero is increasingly unjustifiable and it would be hard to think of a better time than now to raise them, given the economic situation. Plus a 0.25 per cent rise now is a better way forward than having to raise rates higher and faster later.”
However he cautioned that no-one can be certain how markets might react to what would be the first rate hike in almost a decade.
“I suspect that after the Fed’s cautious tone for so long, the markets will take a rate hike as positive evidence of the world’s defacto central bank’s confidence in the durability of the underlying U.S. and global economies,” added Green.
“Should this consensus emerge in the investment community, which I believe it will, corporate earnings growth will be supported.”
As a result he believes investors should ensure they are ‘Fed-ready’ before mid-December to capitalise on the likely upsides that will inevitably come along as a direct result of the Fed’s policy tightening.
He said: “They should be prepared to allocate cash to invest in stock markets. Whilst it is unlikely that we will see spectacular returns, there is no reason not to expect some steady growth.
“An experienced fund manager will be invaluable in selecting the right funds at the right time to take advantage of the opportunities.”