While some investors fear a global bear market is coming for stocks, Pimco is looking to buy, says chief investment officer Bill Gross.
Until recently, Pimco focused exclusively on bonds. Indeed, Gross runs the world’s biggest bond fund, Pimco Total Return.
“We are making a move into equities, period,” he told CNBC. “We are recognizing that the global marketplace is not just bond-oriented, and so equities have a place, always have had a place.”
Gross sees stocks at very low price-to-earnings ratios.
“In some cases, they might be perceived to be almost as safe as the sovereigns (government bonds) themselves, because of their international exposure and their private nature, with a relatively skinny balance sheet,” he said.
It’s not that Pimco is looking at stocks as a hedge against its bond holdings, Gross explains. But rather, stocks make for a more complete menu of offerings.
While Gross expresses enthusiasm about global stocks, BlackRock chief equity strategist Bob Doll expects the U.S. market to outperform.
“Though housing is weak and debt and deficit levels are rising, compared to the rest of the world the U.S. is in reasonably good shape,” he wrote in the Wall Street Journal.
“Our economic fundamentals are sound: manufacturing levels are up, and interest rates and inflation are low.”
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