Europe Is Still In The Throes Of Covid-19, But Its Stocks Are Rallying
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    HOUSE MEDIAN ASKING PRICES AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $1,599,192 (-0.51%)       Melbourne $986,501 (-0.24%)       Brisbane $938,846 (+0.04%)       Adelaide $864,470 (+0.79%)       Perth $822,991 (-0.13%)       Hobart $755,620 (-0.26%)       Darwin $665,693 (-0.13%)       Canberra $994,740 (+0.67%)       National $1,027,820 (-0.13%)                UNIT MEDIAN ASKING PRICES AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $746,448 (+0.19%)       Melbourne $495,247 (+0.53%)       Brisbane $534,081 (+1.16%)       Adelaide $409,697 (-2.19%)       Perth $437,258 (+0.97%)       Hobart $531,961 (+0.68%)       Darwin $367,399 (0%)       Canberra $499,766 (0%)       National $525,746 (+0.31%)                HOUSES FOR SALE AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 10,586 (+169)       Melbourne 15,093 (+456)       Brisbane 7,795 (+246)       Adelaide 2,488 (+77)       Perth 6,274 (+65)       Hobart 1,315 (+13)       Darwin 255 (+4)       Canberra 1,037 (+17)       National 44,843 (+1,047)                UNITS FOR SALE AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 8,675 (+47)       Melbourne 7,961 (+171)       Brisbane 1,636 (+24)       Adelaide 462 (+20)       Perth 1,749 (+2)       Hobart 206 (+4)       Darwin 384 (+2)       Canberra 914 (+19)       National 21,987 (+289)                HOUSE MEDIAN ASKING RENTS AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $770 (-$10)       Melbourne $590 (-$5)       Brisbane $620 ($0)       Adelaide $595 (-$5)       Perth $650 ($0)       Hobart $550 ($0)       Darwin $700 ($0)       Canberra $700 ($0)       National $654 (-$3)                UNIT MEDIAN ASKING RENTS AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney $730 (+$10)       Melbourne $580 ($0)       Brisbane $620 ($0)       Adelaide $470 ($0)       Perth $600 ($0)       Hobart $460 (-$10)       Darwin $550 ($0)       Canberra $560 (-$5)       National $583 (+$1)                HOUSES FOR RENT AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 5,253 (-65)       Melbourne 5,429 (+1)       Brisbane 3,933 (-4)       Adelaide 1,178 (+17)       Perth 1,685 ($0)       Hobart 393 (+25)       Darwin 144 (+6)       Canberra 575 (-22)       National 18,590 (-42)                UNITS FOR RENT AND WEEKLY CHANGE     Sydney 6,894 (-176)       Melbourne 4,572 (-79)       Brisbane 1,991 (+1)       Adelaide 377 (+6)       Perth 590 (+3)       Hobart 152 (+6)       Darwin 266 (+10)       Canberra 525 (+8)       National 15,367 (-221)                HOUSE ANNUAL GROSS YIELDS AND TREND         Sydney 2.50% (↓)       Melbourne 3.11% (↓)       Brisbane 3.43% (↓)       Adelaide 3.58% (↓)     Perth 4.11% (↑)      Hobart 3.78% (↑)      Darwin 5.47% (↑)        Canberra 3.66% (↓)       National 3.31% (↓)            UNIT ANNUAL GROSS YIELDS AND TREND       Sydney 5.09% (↑)        Melbourne 6.09% (↓)       Brisbane 6.04% (↓)     Adelaide 5.97% (↑)        Perth 7.14% (↓)       Hobart 4.50% (↓)       Darwin 7.78% (↓)       Canberra 5.83% (↓)       National 5.76% (↓)            HOUSE RENTAL VACANCY RATES AND TREND       Sydney 0.7% (↑)      Melbourne 0.8% (↑)      Brisbane 0.4% (↑)      Adelaide 0.4% (↑)      Perth 1.2% (↑)      Hobart 0.6% (↑)      Darwin 1.1% (↑)      Canberra 0.7% (↑)      National 0.7% (↑)             UNIT RENTAL VACANCY RATES AND TREND       Sydney 0.9% (↑)      Melbourne 1.4% (↑)      Brisbane 0.7% (↑)      Adelaide 0.3% (↑)      Perth 0.4% (↑)      Hobart 1.5% (↑)      Darwin 0.8% (↑)      Canberra 1.3% (↑)        National 0.9% (↓)            AVERAGE DAYS TO SELL HOUSES AND TREND         Sydney 28.7 (↓)       Melbourne 30.7 (↓)       Brisbane 31.0 (↓)       Adelaide 25.4 (↓)       Perth 34.0 (↓)       Hobart 34.8 (↓)       Darwin 35.1 (↓)       Canberra 28.5 (↓)       National 31.0 (↓)            AVERAGE DAYS TO SELL UNITS AND TREND         Sydney 25.8 (↓)       Melbourne 30.2 (↓)       Brisbane 27.6 (↓)       Adelaide 21.8 (↓)       Perth 37.8 (↓)       Hobart 25.2 (↓)       Darwin 24.8 (↓)       Canberra 41.1 (↓)       National 29.3 (↓)           
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Europe Is Still In The Throes Of Covid-19, But Its Stocks Are Rallying

Certain shares surge as investors look for beaten-down stocks.

By Anna Hirtenstein
Mon, Mar 15, 2021 2:08pmGrey Clock 3 min

European stocks have been on the rise as international investors reposition their portfolios for the global economy to return to normal—a trade that hinges on smooth reopenings in the region.

The pan-continental Stoxx Europe 600 index has gained 4.5% so far this month, pulling ahead of major U.S. gauges, and on Friday hovered close to its highest point in more than a year. The S&P 500 has added 3.5% in the same period and the Russell 2000, an index of small-cap U.S. companies, has increased 6.9%. The Nasdaq Composite has gained 1% so far this month.

Analysts say this is due to a rotation from growth to value stocks: Investors have been snapping up shares of companies hit hard by the pandemic and selling those that benefited from stay-at-home orders. Europe is emerging as a beneficiary of this trade, which banks on a strong economic rebound.

“Europe is predominantly a value market, the U.S. is predominantly a growth market,” said Kasper Elmgreen, head of equity investing at Amundi. “This rotation benefits Europe disproportionately.”

Value stocks are thought to be trading below what they are currently worth. They are typically in established industries and pay dividends, and include banks, energy and industrial companies, which are also more sensitive to the economic cycle. Growth companies are younger and perceived to be innovative, with potential to do well in the future, such as technology.

But delays to the European Union’s procurement of vaccines is likely to result in its member states keeping social-distancing and travel restrictions in place for longer than countries that are inoculating their populations faster, such as the U.S. and Israel. This might mean that Europe’s economic rebound is slower and weaker. Italy reimposed stricter curbs in several regions last week and plans to lock down nationally over Easter.

“We are finding a little bit more opportunity outside of the U.S. [Value stocks] look cheaper and more undervalued overseas,” said Brent Fredberg, director of investments at Brandes Investment Partners in San Diego. “Now you’ve still got a long way to go in many of these companies, even though they’ve rallied hard.”

A key reason for Europe’s recent strong stock-market performance is the composition of indexes. The Stoxx Europe 600 is more heavily weighted toward industries that are considered to be value, such as financials at 17%, industrials at 16% and energy companies at 5%. Its weighting for technology and communications is 10%, compared with 37% for the S&P 500.

Amundi’s Mr Elmgreen has bought shares of European auto makers and companies that produce construction materials recently, and said he is “significantly underweight” U.S. tech, meaning he owns less than the benchmark he tracks.

Another driver of Europe’s performance is the bond market. The sense of optimism about economic growth has also driven fund managers to dump safe-haven assets such as sovereign debt, causing yields to rise and prices to drop. Government bond yields are used as a reference for the cost of debt in the broader market, including loans to companies. That rise in yields implies higher financing costs, benefiting lenders.

European banks have been among the best performers so far this year. Investors have been expecting the recent rise in yields to improve their net interest income, a key source of revenue. French bank Natixis SA has surged 47%, while Amsterdam-based ING Groep NV and Spain’s Banco de Sabadell SA have both risen 32%.

The Vanguard FTSE Europe ETF is up 5.6% for the year and the iShares Europe ETF has also risen 5.5%. Another iShares ETF that invests in European financial firms has climbed 12%.

Companies in sectors still curbed by government restrictions have also jumped. German travel company TUI AG is the biggest winner on the Stoxx Europe 600 this year, soaring 56%. International Consolidated Airlines SA has added 39% and InterContinental Hotels Group PLC has risen 15%.

But whether these gains are justifiable is still a question, according to Simon Webber, a portfolio manager at Schroders with a focus on global equities. “Travel has fundamentally changed, people are used to working productively, meeting and supporting customers remotely,” he said. Aviation stocks in particular “will be heavily scrutinized,” he added.

He has increased his holdings of European banks, but is also looking at buying more growth stocks such as electric-vehicle companies.



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The Great Wealth Transfer: How rich millennials will invest the billions coming their way

The younger generation will bring a different mindset to how and where their newfound wealth is invested

By Bronwyn Allen
Fri, Mar 1, 2024 2 min

There is an enormous global wealth transfer in its beginning stages, whereby one of the largest generations in history – the baby boomers – will pass on their wealth to their millennial children. Knight Frank’s global research report, The Wealth Report 2024, estimates the wealth transfer set to take place over the next two decades in the United States alone will amount to US$90 trillion.

But it’s not just the size of the wealth transfer that is significant. It will also deliver billions of dollars in private capital into the hands of investors with a very different mindset.

Seismic change

Wealth managers say the young and rich have a higher social and environmental consciousness than older generations. After growing up in a world where economic inequality is rife and climate change has caused massive environmental damage, they are seeing their inherited wealth as a means of doing good.

Ben Whattam, co-founder of the Modern Affluence Exchange, describes it as a “seismic change”.

“Since World War II, Western economies have been driven by an overt focus on economic prosperity,” he says. “This has come at the expense of environmental prosperity and has arguably imposed social costs. The next generation is poised to inherit huge sums, and all the research we have commissioned confirms that they value societal and environmental wellbeing alongside economic gain and are unlikely to continue the relentless pursuit of growth at all costs.”

Investing with purpose

Mr Whattam said 66% of millennials wanted to invest with a purpose compared to 49% of Gen Xers. “Climate change is the number one concern for Gen Z and whether they’re rich or just affluent, they see it as their generational responsibility to fix what has been broken by their elders.”

Mike Pickett, director of Cazenove Capital, said millennial investors were less inclined to let a wealth manager make all the decisions.

“Overall, … there is a sense of the next generation wanting to be involved and engaged in the process of how their wealth is managed – for a firm to invest their money with them instead of for them,” he said.

Mr Pickett said another significant difference between millennials and older clients was their view on residential property investment. While property has generated immense wealth for baby boomers, particularly in Australia, younger investors did not necessarily see it as the best path.

“In particular, the low interest rate environment and impressive growth in house prices of the past 15 years is unlikely to be repeated in the next 15,” he said. “I also think there is some evidence that Gen Z may be happier to rent property or lease assets such as cars, and to adopt subscription-led lifestyles.”

Impact investing is a rising trend around the world, with more young entrepreneurs and activist investors proactively campaigning for change in the older companies they are invested in. Millennials are taking note of Gen X examples of entrepreneurs trying to force change. In 2022,  Australian billionaire tech mogul and major AGL shareholder, Mike Cannon-Brookes tried to buy the company so he could shut down its coal operations and turn it into a renewable energy giant. He described his takeover bid as “the world’s biggest decarbonisation project”.

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