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‘Monster reallocations’ to stocks as US tax threat recedes — BofA

LONDON: Investors stampeded into stocks and out of cash as global equity funds witnessed their biggest inflows since March 2021 while large-cap US funds enjoyed a record haul, a weekly round-up by BofA showed on Friday.

A blistering rally in stocks has stalled in the past few weeks but investors remain bullish. Expectations that a major tax hike proposal by the Biden Administration in the United States will be significantly watered down and that the Federal Reserve will continue to support markets have lifted confidence.

At $51.2 billion, stock funds attracted large inflows in the week to Wednesday as investors cut their cash holdings by $61.8 billion, the largest outflows from cash since July 2020, BofA said, citing EPFR data. Bond funds saw inflows of $16.1 billion.

“Monster reallocation cash-to-stocks as tax redistribution threat recedes and the Federal Reserve is expected to remain Wall Street-friendly,” analysts led by Michael Hartnett, chief investment strategist at BofA, said in a note analysing EPFR flows data in the week to Wednesday.

Concerns have grown recently that a gradual withdrawal of pandemic-era stimulus policies by central banks will hit markets. But investors have continued to push equity indexes to or near record highs — the MSCI World equity index has almost doubled in value since March 2020.

BofA said investors remain macro bearish and market bullish with liquidity conditions the easiest since July 2007. Still, the investment bank’s bull and bear indicator held well below a February high as weaker economic data in China weighed on sentiment. — Reuters

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