Kleinwort Benson has increased its exposure to the stock market since the start of this year but is taking a cautious stance, preferring UK, European and emerging market equities to those in the US, the wealth manager said today.
Over the course of 2012, the firm, which believes equities look cheap and are showing some momentum, has boosted equity exposure as a share of all assets to 40 per cent from 33 per cent at the year’s start.
“However, we believe in taking risk only when that risk is properly rewarded. As a result, we remain cautiously positioned in our portfolios,” Mouhammed Choukeir, chief investment officer, said in a note.
Economic uncertainties make it difficult to take a more aggressive stance, the firm said, arguing that markets are caught between problems of high debt with regard to governments and some other institutions on one hand, and central bank injections of money, on the other.
This blend of overall caution, coupled with some increased – if controlled – confidence in equities is held by some other wealth managers. Last week, HSBC Private Bank said there are signs of more positive developments for equities next year, and it is taking a neutral/overweight stance on this asset class.