November 30, 2018 / 12:29 PM / 6 months ago

Cautious U.S. global funds recommend stashing more cash: Reuters poll

Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., November 28, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

(Reuters) - U.S. fund managers became slightly more cautious in November, recommending an increase in cash holdings to the highest in more than a decade and a cut to equity allocations to the lowest in well over a year, a Reuters poll showed.

Evidence pointing to a slowdown in several global economies, a serious trade stand-off between the United State and China, and tightening financial conditions have hurt equities, with most indexes across the globe now in the red for the year.

The average recommended exposure for stocks in November was the lowest since May last year, down to 56.4 percent from 56.7 percent the previous month, according to the latest poll of 13 U.S.-based global fund managers with over $1.5 trillion of assets under management.

A recommended cash increase in the November poll to 5.9 percent was the highest since January 2008, up from 5.3 percent in October. Suggested bond allocations for a model global portfolio were little changed at 35.6 percent.

“Amid so much geopolitical and policy uncertainty, investors should consider dry powder in the form of cash in order to be more opportunistic,” said a global chief investment officer at a large fund.

The more defensive approach of long-term investors lines up with the findings from a separate Reuters poll of equity strategists who cut their 2019 stock markets outlook and said an end to the current bull run is not far away.

Additional polling and reporting by Sarmista Sen and Hari Kishan; Editing by Alison Williams

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