September 28, 2018 / 3:32 AM / in 25 days

POLL-Japan fund managers reduce exposure to stocks in September

* For poll data click reuters://realtime/verb=Open/url=cpurl://apps.cp./Apps/asset-allocation-polls

TOKYO, Sept 28 (Reuters) - Japanese fund managers reduced their overall exposure to stocks in September, while slightly raising bond holdings during a month which saw trade conflict concerns buffet global equities, a Reuters poll showed.

Respondents on average allocated 38.5 percent of their model portfolios to stocks in September, compared with 40.6 percent in August.

Exposure to Japanese stocks was cut to 48.8 percent in September from 63.1 percent in August.

But, the respondents raised their exposure to North American stocks to 28.7 percent in September from 25.6 percent in August and increased euro-zone stock holdings to 13.2 percent from 4.8 percent.

Emerging markets bore the brunt of the turbulence in September, while the U.S. market fared better than most with the Dow climbing to a record high amid optimism towards the world’s biggest economy.

While it has pared its losses since, the MSCI index for world stocks fell as much as 2.5 percent in mid-September, when the escalating U.S.-China trade row chilled investor appetite for riskier assets.

The fund managers nudged up their overall exposure to bonds to 54.4 percent in September from 54.3 percent in August.

Their North American bond exposure increased to 29.2 percent in September from 25.7 percent in August, with long-term U.S. Treasury yields having climbed above the 3 percent threshold to their highest in four months.

With German 10-year bund yields also rising to four-month highs during the month, the respondents raised their euro-zone bond holdings to 23.1 percent in September from 15.8 percent in August.

The reduced their Japanese bond exposure to 42.1 percent in September from 53.6 percent in August. (Reporting by the Tokyo markets team; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)

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