November 30, 2017 / 3:31 AM / a year ago

POLL-Japan fund managers slightly increase stock exposure in November

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

TOKYO, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Japanese fund managers slightly increased their overall exposure to stocks in November, centred on domestic equities, while trimming bond holdings, a Reuters poll showed.

Respondents on average allocated 37.7 percent of their model portfolios to equities in November, from 37.3 percent in October.

They increased their exposure to Japanese stocks to 46.3 percent in November from 41.3 percent in October.

Japan’s Nikkei struck a 21-year high early in November and has stayed close to that peak. It has gained 10.8 percent in the current quarter, compared to a 4.2 percent increase by the S&P 500 during the same time period.

“Led by manufacturers, listed companies in Japan are posting large profit increases and the domestic equity market looks to retain its strong footing,” said Yuichi Kodama, chief economist at Meiji Yasuda Insurance.

“It remains to be seen how far the rise can be sustained with some investors beginning to feel the market is overvalued, as the pace of its surge through the start of this month has been rapid.”

Respondents reduced their North American equity holdings to 30.5 percent in November from 38.0 percent in October, while raising Asia excluding Japan exposure to 6.7 percent from 4.2 percent. They left euro zone stock holdings unchanged at 8.3 percent.

The fund managers reduced their overall bond holdings to 56.9 percent in November from 57.5 percent in October.

They cut their North American bond exposure to 33.0 percent in November from 38.1 percent in October, while increasing euro zone bond holdings to 22.8 percent from 18.8 percent.

Long-term U.S. Treasury yields have declined by 6 basis points so far in November, while their German bund counterparts have risen by 3 basis points.

The survey of five Japan-based fund managers was conducted between Nov. 14 and 24. (Reporting by the Tokyo markets team; Editing by Sam Holmes)

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