Didier BOROWSKI, Pierre BLANCHET, Tristan PERRIER
the articles & research center news
The summer season has seen both the confirmation of existing themes and the emergence of new ones wich will likely drive economic and market trends in the coming months. On one hand, the decoupling between the real economy and financial markets has proved persistent but on the other hand as the holiday season going on the way the rising level of Covid-19 infections across Europe and in part of the US confirm that the pandemic is still not yet over. Monica Defend, Global Head of Research discuss the overall economic recovery and share Amundi main areas of convictions.
There was a substantial decline in Q2 earnings but they turned out to be better than expected; their decline being ultimately less pronounced than during the Great Financial Crisis (GFC) of 2008-2009, whereas the current recession is much more severe. This surprising resilience is due in large part to sector aspects. Financial stocks have generally proved more resilient than during the GFC. Furthermore, the Healthcare and Technology sectors have emerged remarkably unscathed. The other side of the coin is that, without these last two sectors, the decline in earnings would have been much more pronounced. Given the revisions made and the achievements in H1, barring a new general lockdown episode, most of the consensus adjustment seems to be behind us. However, the valuation debate - excessive or not - is still far from being resolved. The duration of the crisis will be the key parameter in responding to this question.
The macro-economic backdrop has improved, albeit at a slower pace more recently. The European response to the crisis has further strengthened investor sentiment. However, the political picture has changed over the summer in the US and deteriorated in emerging markets.
Didier BOROWSKI, Pierre BLANCHET
The agreement reached among EU leaders at the end of the longest European Council in history to mobile a comprehensive package of €1 824 bn – including the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) and the Next Generation EU (NGEU) instrument –is a significant achievement and a net positive in the short term for EU assets.
Didier BOROWSKI, Eric BRARD, Kasper ELMGREEN, Alban de FAY, Isabelle VIC-PHILIPPE
US fixed income can be a valuable source of diversification for European investors, but in the past the cost of hedging of the US Dollar exposure was high, neutralizing this benefit. The situation has changed, and the cost of hedging for Euro-based investors is much lower than in the recent past. Furthermore, we expect this cost will remain low.
Kevin CHOY, Christine TODD, Paresh UPADHYAYA
The Conference on the Future of Europe, planned earlier this year, will probably open in September in a very different context than initially expected. Who will chair it and whether a new treaty for the union will be on the agenda remains unclear, but the need to address repositioning Europe post the Covid-19 pandemic is clear. Indeed, the EU is suffering from a risk of fragmentation along several lines that could deeply undermine its ability to deal with the challenges to be seen in the next decade. The asset purchase programs (APP) of the European Central Bank, the emergency package via the ESM, and now the European Commission (EC) proposal ‘Next Generation EU’ are powerful tools to address these risks.
Cyclical conditions are turning more positive for Europe. Easing geopolitical risk and the prospect of massive fiscal resources (national and EU-wide) and monetary support could support a recovery in 2021. The improved sentiment could benefit European assets, equities in particular, that have been a laggard due to the pandemic. This could lead to a catch up of EU equities in relative terms vs other markets.
Pascal BLANQUE, Vincent MORTIER