Goldman Sachs cuts its global view on equities to "neutral" from "overweight" for the coming three months, arguing it expects the recent rally on global equities over the last quarter to lose momentum due partly to lingering worries over the debt situation in the euro zone and United States.
However, the investment bank maintains a broader "overweight" rating on equities on a 12-month timeframe, as it expects a gradual pick-up in the global economy over the course of the year to lift equity markets later on in 2013.
"Over three months, the U.S. fiscal outlook and the European sovereign situation remain downside risks, and even though we would not expect any sell-off to be long-lived or particularly large, we also don't see the near-term upside risks as very large," Goldman writes in a strategy note.
"However, our downgrade of equities is a close call and we would see any sell-off as an opportunity to add exposure again," it adds.
Goldman Sachs expects a 3 percent return on the pan-European STOXX Europe 600 index over the coming three months, and for that index to yield a 13 percent return on a 12-month basis.
Goldman has a "neutral" rating on European equities on a 3-month basis, with an "underweight" recommendation on Europe over 12 months.
"We doubt that Europe will keep up with the Asian markets given its much weaker economy," writes Goldman.
Goldman is "overweight" on Asian equities, excluding Japan, and has an "underweight" rating on U.S. equities.
"The U.S. market has already recovered strongly from the financial crisis, yet the level of economic growth remains weak and this is the only region where our earnings forecasts are below consensus," it writes.
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