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Global growth pick-up to boost equities

By Sarah Kendell
30 December 2019 — 1 minute read

Improved global economic growth is likely to provide a boost to equity markets in 2020, but low interest rates will be here to stay in the coming year, according to AMP Capital.

In a recent blog post, AMP Capital chief economist Shane Oliver said that with monetary policy easing having an impact on business confidence, economic growth was likely to improve and have a corresponding flow-on effect on company profits.

“Central banks around the world have embraced monetary easing over the past year, a strategy which seems to finally be gaining traction, with a number of business surveys showing recent signs of improvement,” Mr Oliver said.

“Along with the possibility of a de-escalation in the trade war between the US and China, this should fire up global growth again after the slowdown we’ve seen over the last couple of years.”

However, Mr Oliver said the current low interest rate environment was unlikely to abate in 2020, with further rate cuts likely from the RBA in the next few months.

“Despite [improved growth] we will still be living in a world of very low inflation and low interest rates,” he said.

“Usually after a turnaround of this nature it can take at least a year or so before spare capacity in the economy is absorbed before inflation starts to become an issue and interest rates are raised as a result.

“Locally we expect growth to be somewhat constrained in the first part of the year and pressure will continue on the Reserve Bank for further rate cuts through the early part of the year, potentially followed by a program of quantitative easing.”

While Mr Oliver warned of further volatility in share markets in 2020, he said the low rate environment combined with strong economic growth was likely to have a positive effect on the share market.

“Market performance might not be as strong as in 2019, and there may be more volatility, but the combination of improving growth, higher profits and continued low interest rates should support markets along their way to decent gains in 2020,” he said.


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