Markets stocks

Market Close To ‘Full Bull,’ BofA Says

We’re close to “full bull,” BofA’s Michael Hartnett declared, in the latest edition of the bank’s closely-watched Global Fund Manager survey.

The November vintage is “the most bullish [survey] of 2020,” Hartnett said Tuesday, and it comes courtesy of vaccines, the election, and macro expectations.

Perhaps most notably, the November survey shows growth expectations are at a two-decade high. A net 91% of participants think the economy will be stronger over the next 12 months. This measure hasn’t been higher since March of 2002.

Profit expectations are similarly elevated. A net 84% of respondents expect global earnings to improve. That too is the highest in almost 19 years.

Cash levels fell to just 4.1% from 4.4%. That’s actually lower than pre-COVID levels and “close to triggering [a] ‘sell signal'”on BofA’s FMS Cash Rule.

“Cash levels have collapsed 1.8ppts in past 7 months,” which Hartnett notes is the “fastest drop ever.”

Given the above, you can probably surmise that optimism around equities is running rampant. “FMS investor optimism on stocks increase[d] sharply to [the] highest level since January 2018,” BofA said, in the course of suggesting that the “topping process” is “underway,” given that readings above 50 signal “extremely bullish” sentiment.

Amid the ebullient mood, Hartnett notes an “unambiguous rotation” to emerging markets, small caps, value, and banks, “funded by lower allocations to cash, bonds, [and] staples.”

The bottom line, he said, is that “the reopening rotation can continue in Q4 but we say ‘sell the vaccine’ in [the] coming weeks/months as we think we’re close to ‘full bull.'”


4 comments on “Market Close To ‘Full Bull,’ BofA Says

  1. jyl says:

    Investors can be “full bull” and the market can be “topping” for months, sometimes years.

  2. Ria says:

    Would not surprise me to see a correction here shortly followed by an investable opportunity to get to higher levels on S&P 500. A 5-10% correction followed by a 20-25% rally later this year into 2021. But we shall see.

  3. jyl says:

    I wouldn’t argue with that.


    Sometimes, maybe most of the time, it is easier to figure out what is likely to happen to the index than what is likely to happen to an individual stock.

    This is one of the unusual times when I feel it is the reverse, not for most individual stocks, but for enough individual stocks to make up a portfolio.

    The number of factors that have whipped the SP500 around this year, and the unfamiliarity and opaqueness of some of those factors to me, make me pretty unwilling to make market calls a big part of my process right now.

    That just highlights my failings as a market strategist but, like Clint says, a man’s got to know his limitations.

  4. JJS says:

    Mr H, any chance you could overlay the S&P 500 chart on the optimism chart?

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