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Christopher Wooden: I’m suspicious of the rally in US, India: Christopher Wooden


Christopher Wooden, world head of fairness technique at Jefferies, says the latest run-up in equities is extra of a bear market rally within the US, which Indian shares are tailing. In an interview with Sanam Mirchandani, Wooden mentioned India will not be amongst his high investment locations in the meanwhile. Edited excerpts:

What’s your analysis of the rally in Indian markets?

My view is that it’s a bear market rally within the US. The rationale to be sceptical in regards to the rally in America is that you’ve a double whammy – tightening of upper charges and shrinking stability sheets – which is detrimental for liquidity. The rally is pushed on hopes that inflation pressures have peaked. Inflation might have peaked however the important thing challenge is whether or not inflation has settled. The true challenge is whether or not the Fed goes to try to meet its 2% goal. India is simply following the US. I’m suspicious of this rally within the US and India. The market rally in India is carefully related to the rally on Wall Road. Correction in oil has additionally helped India. I personally stay bullish on oil. I need to proceed to personal power shares. I’ve not modified my view on India. The important thing challenge right here in India is how a lot charges go up and the way far the rupee declines.

Mind Over Money

Is the Fed prone to proceed elevating charges aggressively?

The Fed is speaking hawkish however on the finish of the day, I am sceptical they will stick with the two% goal. My guess is inflation is operating about 4% or 5% in America on the finish of this 12 months. The inflation challenge in America or Europe is way greater than in India.

Is the worst of international buyers’ promoting in Indian equities over?

They haven’t purchased that a lot in comparison with what they offered. One purpose that foreigners offered a lot in India earlier this 12 months was as a result of they had been placing more cash into China. China was easing coverage and India was tightening, so China regarded extra engaging. However in latest months, the Chinese language financial system funding story has been broken considerably by the continued COVID suppression coverage. In order that has precipitated buyers to turn out to be much less constructive on China.

The place are oil costs headed?

By the tip of the 12 months, I see oil costs going increased. The principle purpose why oil costs usually are not increased is due to the weak demand from China, which is said to the COVID suppression coverage. The COVID suppression coverage is a detrimental for China, but it surely’s a constructive for the Indian financial system and the Indian market. I stay structurally bullish on oil due to the shortage of provide. The opposite excellent news for India is the cheaper Russian oil. The COVID suppression coverage has precipitated a big slowdown within the Chinese language financial system and weakened Chinese language shopper confidence which has led to lowered demand for power.

The place does India stand in your checklist of funding locations?

This 12 months India will not be the very best market, due to the financial tightening cycle. One of the best performing market, once I final checked, in Asia was Indonesia. My largest obese in Asia this calendar 12 months to date has been Indonesia. India is ok, however India has received a number of crosscurrents. On a 10-year view, India is my favorite wager however not in 2022. The RBI is tightening. It was behind the curve, however it’s not as unhealthy because it was. I nonetheless consider oil goes increased. I am obese on India, however not dramatically, solely a little bit obese. India has executed higher than I anticipated at the beginning of the 12 months due to geopolitical elements, of which an important is China’s COVID suppression coverage. If China didn’t have the COVID suppression coverage, the Chinese language inventory market can be doing a lot better and India can be underperforming.

For India, the essential factor is what the RBI does. The fascinating level about India this 12 months is the resilience of the inventory market given the massive quantity of international promoting. In the long run, one ought to stay invested in India however undoubtedly the danger of a correction is rising. What the RBI does is essential.

What’s your outlook for the rupee?
The Indian foreign money goes to be weak as long as there may be tightening happening. So, the excellent news is that the RBI was very behind the curve at the beginning of this 12 months. I’ve gotten much less nervous on the Indian foreign money in the previous few months as a result of the RBI has began elevating charges. I used to be extra nervous in January and February earlier than we had the inter assembly hike. India’s inflation challenge is a extra extreme one than in China or Indonesia, for instance. So, that is why India’s foreign money has been weaker.

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