European equities offer SMSFs value, says economist
European equities are expected to outperform US markets next year, according to BetaShares, with the European economy starting to pick up and monetary conditions remaining favourable.
BetaShares chief economist David Bassanese told SMSF Adviser that while European earnings growth has lagged the US in recent years, there are signs European companies are starting to manage their capital better and improve shareholder returns.
“Europe should outperform because there’s scope for earnings catch up as the main driver, US earnings have been quite strong relative to Europe but the European economy is starting to pick up,” said Mr Bassanese.
“The other driver will be the fact the European Central Bank is going to maintain an easing bias whereas the Fed is going to be tightening.”
Germany is one region SMSF investors should be looking at, according to Mr Bassanese, since it is currently one of the strongest economies in Europe.
“Germany is benefitting from the weakness of the euro because it’s a major exporting country so it’s probably the first place to consider,” he said.
“The other country to look at is Ireland given the tech boom that’s going on globally, and there are more signs that their competitive tax rate is attracting more firms to want to set up operations in Ireland.”
Mr Bassanese said he was wary of some of the peripheral countries, however, given they are vulnerable to another crisis emerging in Greece.
“The main thing is to look for countries that are able to benefit from the weakness of the euro and to seek out export markets, so that suggests countries like Germany in particular,” he said.