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《财富》邀专家谈2018年投资建议

Mathew Heimer 2017年12月21日

从年度圆桌论坛看最佳股票是哪些,最大风险在哪。

天下没有不散的筵席。虽然有史以来持续最久的牛市帮投资者今年又赚了不少,但很多人脑中这个想法都挥之不去。经济持续向好,技术革新性变化也让很多公司回报可观,是不是该认真从一群普通股票中选出潜力股?为了回答这个问题,《财富》在即将进入2018之际特地邀请投资专家召开了年度圆桌论坛。

今年的与会者包括美国普信集团股票和多种资产首席投资官大卫·吉诺斯,掌管450亿美元资产;新时代投资公司董事总经理兼投资组合经理凯拉·范瓦伦,该公司管理资产规模为490亿美元;管理45亿美元资金的跨国风投公司柏尚投资合伙人拜伦·迪特尔;管理190亿美元资产;还有美银弗雷德·艾尔格管理咨询公司首席执行官兼首席投资官丹尼尔· 钟;美林全球研究团队美国股票和量化投资策略负责人萨维塔·萨布拉玛尼安,管理客户资产总值高达2.7万亿美元。以下为各位嘉宾讨论内容节选。

《财富》:我想问问当前的股市长牛。当前的牛市已经持续近九年,包括我自己在内,不少唱衰者都在担心市场估值泡沫问题,尤其是美国市场。2018年有没有可能出现调整?

萨维塔·萨布拉玛尼安:确实有点让人不安。如果股市坚挺到明年7月还不跌,我们真会迎来史上持续时间最长的牛市。现在买入感觉确实不好。

但如果想想1999年的情况,当时估值也很高。一个版块撑起了标普500大部分收益。当时也是感觉不适合买入,但当年却是那轮牛市里收益最高的一年。

看来估值真不适合用来判断市场时机。如果你太担心接下来一年(所以不敢投资),那么用市盈率来计算市场回报就是接近零。

Every party has to end sometime. That’s the troubling thought that’s been nagging at many investors this year, even as they’ve continued to profit from one of the longest-running bull markets for stocks in history. Positive economic trends and transformative changes in technology are helping many companies deliver standout returns—but is it time to get choosier about sorting winners from losers? To answer that question as we roll into 2018, Fortune convened our annual roundtable of investment experts.

This year’s panel included David Giroux, chief investment officer for equity and multi-asset at T. Rowe Price and manager of a $45 billion portfolio; Kera Van Valen, managing director and portfolio manager at Epoch Investment Partners, a firm with $49 billion under management; Byron Deeter, partner at Bessemer Venture Partners, a global VC firm with $4.5 billion under management; Dan Chung, CEO and chief investment officer of the $19 billion Fred Alger Management advisory firm; and Savita Subramanian, head of U.S. equity and quantitative strategy at Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Research, whose wealth-management client balances total $2.7 trillion. Here, edited excerpts from their discussion.

FORTUNE: I’d like to ask about the very long bull run that we’ve had in stocks. The bull market is almost nine years old. Some Cassandras, myself included, have been worried that markets are overvalued, especially in the U.S. Is a slowdown or even a market correction looking more likely in 2018?

SAVITA SUBRAMANIAN: It does feel sort of unsettling. By next July if the market continues to go up, we’ll be in officially the longest bull market, by technical definitions, in history. And it doesn’t feel good to buy equities now.

But if you think about 1999, it was a year where valuations were getting high. One sector was driving most of the returns of the S&P 500. It didn’t feel great to buy equities, yet that was one of the best years of that bull market.

It also turns out that valuations are a really lousy market-timing model. If you’re concerned about what happens over the next 12 months, the amount of returns that are explained by the price/earnings ratio are basically close to zero.

弗雷德·艾尔格管理咨询公司首席执行官兼首席投资官丹尼尔· 钟
Photograph by Spencer Heyfron for Fortune

《财富》:你提到1999年让我想起,过去一年市场上表现最好的版块跟1999年一样,都是科技股。但是丹,你又说过从历史角度看当前科技股估值并不算高。

丹尼尔·钟:如果看20年来各版块的市盈率中位数,即便偶尔冒进过,但科技和医疗股价格基本上接近市盈率中位数。溢价比较高的版块实际上是材料、公用事业、大宗商品和工业股,比起中位数溢价比例介于14%到20%。所以真正算下来,科技和医疗股的估值还算合理。

拜伦•迪特尔:去年经历了一些大事件,我觉得能证明当前科技行业的业绩有支撑。

7月,全球市值排名前五的公司都是风投支持的科技公司,包括苹果、谷歌母公司Alphabet、微软、亚马逊和Facebook。顺便说下,排名第六的中国公司阿里巴巴也是风投支持的科技公司。强劲业绩支撑下的各家巨头市值超过了传统大公司伯克希尔、摩根大通和埃克森,成为全世界价值最高的企业。

再想想未来的发展趋势——移动化、机器学习,以及云计算。以后这些新领域将成为拉动经济发展主要动力,而且趋势会一直持续。

凯拉•范瓦伦:当前市场由量化宽松推动转为看实际基本面,看利润增长,看现金流增长如何推动市场。我们认为这种趋势会持续下去,所以认为不会出现什么调整。

《财富》:大卫,有没有资产估值高到让你担心?

大卫·吉诺斯:现在不管看全球哪里估值都很高,而且息差都在收窄。国债利率也很低,所以没什么特别好的投资标的。

一般来说,外国股票比美国便宜些,但如果穿透表面看本质,剔除FANG四大股(Facebook、亚马逊、Netflix和谷歌)之后,欧洲股票跟美国股票估值比较接近。

我们很喜欢医药之外的医疗板块。这类股票市盈率基本在1.5到2倍之间。所以可以看一些研发生命科学工具的公司,例如珀金埃尔默,或赛默飞世尔科技。两家都在中国有不少业务。想想现在推动中国经济增长的是哪些因素,医疗、食品安全,还有水质。这些领域的产品都是生命科学公司可以销售的。

《财富》:科技公司其实也能参与一些。

钟:是的。举例来说,我认为医药和生物科技…哦,我想不起来人类基因哪年完成测序了,之后进展非常迅速,测序技术也变得非常便宜,也为现在研发新药奠定了基础。例如在免疫肿瘤学领域:其实并非所有的癌症肿瘤都一样,基本上说,根据基因差异可以判断哪种癌症会对哪些药物有反应,哪些不起作用。当然了,应用范围也不只是癌症。囊性纤维化(制药公司)Vertex在治疗方面就进展迅速。

设备方面,我们比较欣赏Illumina,这是家基因测序公司,其产品在分析基因编码和测序信息作用很大,可供治疗和研究使用。软件和自动化也在推动进展。Intuitive Surgica之类业内很成功的公司使用自动化技术越来越多,可以对手术过程实施更严格的控制,减少对健康组织和神经的伤害,也可以降低肿瘤的侵袭性。

《财富》:谈谈税改吧。我们一直在讨论产品销往全世界的美国公司。大家都知道,很多跨国公司的利润都放在海外。如果税改方案通过,很多现金会流回美国,会不会有更多流向股东?

范瓦伦:一次性现金变化,或税改本身都不太可能增加资本投资,因为近年来获得融资相当容易。所以一次性事件不太可能改变现状。我们预计实质性影响更可能通过股票回购体现。如果税改或减税可以确定,即便公司不改变资本分配政策,但由于利润增加,股息同样可能提升。

迪特尔:税改政策是可能有些实质性的积极影响。但我更关心移民政策。数据显示市值超过10亿美元的科技公司里有51%至少一位创始人是移民。如果遣返或限制移民,创新经济会遭受灾难性的重创。

FORTUNE: You invoked 1999: One of the better performing areas of the market in the past year has been, once again, technology. But, Dan, you were saying that tech valuations, relative to history, are not that high.

DAN CHUNG: If you look at the 20-year median P/Es of each sector, even with the run that they’ve had, technology and health care are basically trading at their median P/Es. The sectors that are trading at premiums are actually materials, utilities, staples, and industrials, where they’re somewhere between 14% and 20% premiums to their medians. So by that measure, technology and health care actually remain reasonably valued.

BYRON DEETER: We passed some major milestones last year that I think speak to the fundamental performance of these tech businesses.

In July, the five largest market cap companies on the planet were all venture-backed tech companies, including Apple, Alphabet, Microsoft, Amazon, and Facebook. No. 6, by the way, is Alibaba, also venture-backed technology, in China. The fundamental business performance of these companies has allowed them to pass the old guard of Berkshire, JPMorgan, and Exxon for the world’s most valuable companies.

And as you think about the trends ahead—mobility, machine learning, cloud computing—a lot of these tailwind trends that are ripping through large portions of the economy are increasing and going to continue.

KERA VAN VALEN: We’ve also moved from a market that’s been fueled by quantitative easing to one where it’s actual fundamentals—earnings growth, cash flow growth—that have driven the markets. We think that can continue, so we’re not looking for a correction by any means.

FORTUNE: David, do valuations in particular asset categories worry you?

DAVID GIROUX: Globally, wherever you look, valuations are high and credit spreads are kind of tight. Treasury interest rates are kind of low as well, so there’s no real good value.

Foreign stocks are nominally cheaper than U.S. stocks, but really when you look under the surface and take out the FANG stocks [Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, and Google], European stocks and U.S. stocks are somewhat similarly valued.

I would say the one sector that we like a lot is non-pharma health care. You’re getting companies basically running at a market multiple with 1.5 to 2 times the growth rate of the market. So you think about something like the life science tool companies, like a PerkinElmer (PKI, +0.45%), or Thermo Fisher Scientific (TMO, -0.02%). They have a lot of exposure into China. And you think about what’s driving China’s growth rate, it’s health care, food safety, water quality. These are things that all the life sciences companies sell into.

FORTUNE: That is in some ways a technology play too.

CHUNG: Right. I think in pharma and biotech, for example, you’ve got, oh, I don’t know how many years ago the human genome was sequenced and then the development of ever faster, ever cheaper sequencing techniques. That set the base for research that is now coming out with new drugs. For example, immuno-oncology: Cancer tumors are not all the same, basically, and genetic differences can determine what cancers respond to which drugs and which do not. And it’s not just cancer, of course. Cystic fibrosis [drugmaker] Vertex (VRTX, -0.52%) has shown pretty remarkable advances there in treating that terrible disease.

On the equipment side, we like Illumina (ILMN, -0.65%), which is one of the genetic sequencing companies that provide the heavy horsepower to analyze specific genetic codes and sequences for clinical and research purposes. There are also advances that are software and automation driven. So a great company like Intuitive Surgical is using more and more automation software to allow surgery to be done with more control, less damage to healthy tissue or nerves, and less invasiveness.

FORTUNE: Let’s talk about tax reform. We’ve been talking about American companies selling their products worldwide. And as we know, they’re parking a lot of their earnings overseas. If tax reform passes and a lot of that cash comes back to the States, does more of it flow to shareholders?

VAN VALEN: It’s unlikely that any one-time cash change, or any tax reform per se, is going to increase capital investments because access to funds has been quite easy in recent years. So a one-time event shouldn’t change that. We would expect it potentially to materialize more through share buybacks. If there’s a permanent level to the tax reform and tax reductions, then dividends could increase even without companies having to change their capital allocation policies because they would be more profitable.

DEETER: There are some real potential positives from tax policy. In terms of immigration policy, I’m a little more concerned. The data shows that 51% of companies in the tech sector with over a billion dollars in market cap were started by at least one immigrant founder. If you throttle that back, or if you start to limit immigration, there will be disastrous impact on the innovation economy.

美林全球研究团队美国股票和量化投资策略负责人萨维塔·萨布拉玛尼安
Photograph by Spencer Heyfron for Fortune

萨布拉玛尼安:说得非常对。科技领域对H-1B签证最为敏感。所以,移民政策动向对科技板块来说是重大风险。

《财富》:如果移民政策风险真的爆发,美国遭受损失的同时谁会获益呢?

萨布拉玛尼安:如果看股市的话,可以多关注美国国内股票,看看主要雇佣美国员工的企业。不过我认为最终会导致通胀,也有可能引发滞胀,因为没法再享受海外人才带来的增长。

钟:我认为投资者会更多关注中国。中国的科技行业先进程度跟美国差不多,又在向“一带一路”计划大手笔投资建基础设施。如果美国真的撤出全球化,拒绝移民,中国会成为资本集中开展各种项目的地方,也能吸引到人才。

我还要提出的一点是,中国的腾讯等科技公司在移动支付方面遥遥领先西方同行,也超过了欧洲标准。

吉诺斯:去年我在华盛顿特区待过很久。我觉得税改会真正实行,而且对美国市场有好处,因为目前公司税平均水平约为27%。税改后可以降到20%,由此可以推动利润上升,没准能涨7%,8%,9%。美国国内公司、金融机构和消费品公司都有可能获益。

所以你看,现在辉瑞之类公司税率为34%,如果税改方案通过辉瑞的利润可能每股多出亿美元。再看饮料公司胡椒博士(Dr Pepper Snapple),现在税率也是34%,股价比起以往一直有折价,如果税改通过利润可能最多提升15%。现在有很多高赋税的公司估值都没有(根据税改影响)调整到位。

《财富》:以前有说法是大规模减税后,小公司获益更多。

萨布拉玛尼安:确实是这样。小盘股有效税率更高。一旦减税小公司收益会更多。但挑选小盘股时也要小心,问题在于公司实际能从减税政策中获益多少?我们发现某一板块或整体市场都享受到降低公司税之后,很多成效其实都在竞争中磨掉了。

举个例子,如果你在一个非常市场化的行业里,你跟所有竞争对手同时享受到减税待遇,或许你可以通过降价传导给顾客,但竞争对手同样可以降价,减税带来的边际效益也就基本消失了。

SUBRAMANIAN: That’s absolutely right. Tech is the most exposed to H-1B visas of any sector. So, yeah, that is a big risk for the tech story.

FORTUNE: If that risk comes to fruition, who gains if the U.S. loses?

SUBRAMANIAN: In stocks, you’d want to go domestic; you’d want to go for U.S. companies that hire primarily U.S. workers. I think that’s ultimately inflationary and potentially stagflationary, because we’re crimping off growth from overseas.

CHUNG: I think China would be in a very strong position for investors. Their Internet industry is just as strong as the U.S. They’re making huge investments in the Silk Road initiative for infrastructure. And if the U.S. is really withdrawing from globalization and immigration, they are a source of capital as well for all of these projects, as well as talent.

And I would point out companies like Tencent (TCEHY, -3.15%), where in mobile payments they’re well ahead of Western or even European standards.

GIROUX: I actually spent a lot of time in D.C. over the last year. I think you will see tax reform. I think it’s a positive for the U.S. market because the average company today is at about a 27% tax rate. If that can go down to 20%, that could boost earnings for the market, 7%, 8%, 9%. The domestic companies, financials, consumer discretionary companies would probably be the winners.

So if you look at a company like a Pfizer (PFE, +1.08%) that has a 34% tax rate, their

earnings could potentially go up as much as a dollar a share if you had tax reform. You could look at a Dr Pepper Snapple (DPS, -0.38%) with a 34% tax rate, where their earnings—it was actually trading at a discount to what it historically traded, where the earnings could go up 15%. There are a lot of high-tax-rate companies that are just not being appropriately valued for [the impact of a tax cut].

FORTUNE: Historically it’s been argued that a big tax cut benefits smaller companies more.

SUBRAMANIAN: It’s true. Small-caps pay a higher effective tax rate. They would stand to gain a lot more from that tax cut. But within small-caps you need to be careful because the question is, How much of that tax benefit are companies going to actually retain? And what we’ve found is that when you have a windfall for a sector or for the market overall from a lower corporate tax rate, a lot of that benefit is actually competed away.

So for example, if you’re in a commoditized industry and you and all of your competitors get a windfall in terms of a lower tax rate, maybe you pass that on to your customers through lower prices, and that marginal benefit actually gets whittled away by natural competitive forces.

柏尚投资合伙人拜伦·迪特尔
Photograph by Spencer Heyfron for Fortune

《财富》:税改过后2018年会不会涌现IPO潮?

迪特尔:很有可能。现在的市场状况非常诡异,可以称之为独角兽上市堰塞湖,大量高质量公司选择推迟上市。八年前第一次出现风投支持私人科技公司估值超过10亿美元。现在全世界超过了200家,其中多过半数在美国。

所以现在有大量优秀的公司,高质量的公司等着上市,例如估值上百亿美元的Ubers、Airbnbs和Pinterests,还有数十家估值远超10亿美元的企业云公司,要是前些年肯定已经上市了。

私下里我也知道有些公司在做准备,如果市场能维持稳定2018年初就启动上市,但要等到一季度结束或二季度开始,这样能把2017年全年审计财报数字加进去。现在只需要一点稳定性——振幅低的市场和愿意买入的投资者。

《财富》:在你看来,明年新技术可能带动哪些特定行业?

迪特尔:用不了几年汽车行业就会彻底转型,主要受三大趋势影响:电动、按需,而且很快会出现无人驾驶。我认为现在美国的孩子们长大不会再考驾照,开车可能会成为一种爱好,就像现在的骑马一样,因为人类驾驶很不理性也不安全。

《财富》:你认为传统汽车制造商能跟上趋势么?

钟:跟不上。传统汽车公司仍然会参与竞争,会被动跟着潮流走,但领头羊显然会是特斯拉、谷歌(和母公司Alphabet)、Uber之类公司,如果苹果积极加入也有可能加入领先之列。关键是,车上可能还贴着通用汽车的标志,按如果自动驾驶技术要通过别家公司许可,如果得外包更先进的电子设备,那么汽车的核心价值很可能逐渐流向科技巨头,而不会留在通用汽车。

迪特尔:我想补充一点,现在有很多汽车公司花费数十亿美元想跟上自动驾驶和电动汽车潮流。所以还是要鼓励下通用汽车、福特和戴姆勒。传统巨头们都在拼命学习,也在内部加强投资。

《财富》:谈谈通胀吧。美联储表示将继续收紧利率,可能对稍稍推动工资增长。你们的战略会受什么影响?

范瓦伦:五年前我们就在讨论利率上扬如何应对,现在终于迎来利率上升反而有些解脱。

利率上行确实会有影响,即便是人人都认为面临挑战的公用事业版块也是一样。2015年利率刚往上走的时候公用事业版块跟标普500指数基本符合,稍微好一点。所以要选准公用事业公司,不要只盯着高收益的公司,要找真正有现金流,而且增长率能支撑公司回馈股东的。我们认为只要能如实反映经济增长,利率上升的环境其实利大于弊。

虽然公用事业版块也受益于技术发展,例如智能电表应用。智能电表意味着如果遇到暴雨不再需要那么多员工出外勤,也不用在街上开车巡视,看哪里树倒了压倒电线,因为通过智能电表立刻就能知道。PPL就是个例子,这家公司目前在投资更换智能电表改造电网,提升电网适应能力。智能电表计划会推动费率基准、利润和现金流增长,最终也会提振股息。

萨布拉玛尼安:美联储一直在印钞,通常会导致通胀出现,但并没有出现。

有个有趣的趋势,我们发现美国在体力岗位上劳动力缺乏日益严重。举个例子,工业分析师和交通分析师都写到,很多公司找不到体力劳动工人。原因还挺特别。因为很多人对阿片类药物上瘾,能工作的人数大为减少。体力劳动者坐牢的比例也更高。我们还发现适合工作的体力劳动者,尤其是男性工人都在沉迷电子游戏。

劳动力缺乏也体现在利润方面。举个例子,建筑商为了把工人从其他活动上拉回来就得付更高工资。这是个刚开始出现的趋势,慢慢人们会发现此类行业利润会受到影响。

最核心的问题是就是公司能不能掌控定价能力,经济能否保持强劲,消费者才愿意付更高价钱抵消成本上升。

FORTUNE: Could tax reform turn 2018 into a big IPO year?

DEETER: Quite possibly. We have this very bizarre market dynamic right now, which you can call the logjam of the unicorns, the unpre¬cedented number of high-quality companies that have chosen to delay their IPOs. Eight years ago was the first time a venture-backed private tech company was valued at over a billion dollars. We have over 200 today worldwide, and well over half those are in the U.S.

And so you’ve got this glut of fabulous companies, high-quality companies that in prior years would have been public, and today are sitting on the doorstep with ranges from the Ubers and Airbnbs and Pinterests in the tens of billions to dozens of enterprise cloud companies that are worth well over $1 billion.

I know of several companies personally that are targeting early 2018 IPOs if the market holds up, but are waiting until late Q1 or early Q2 so that they can include their full 2017 audited financials. We just need predictability—low volatility and willing buy-side investors.

FORTUNE: What are some of the specific industries where you’ll see new technology moving the needle next year?

DEETER: Automotive a few years from now will be completely transformed by the three big trends: electrification, on demand, and soon, autonomy. I don’t believe kids born today in the U.S. will get their driver’s licenses, and it will seem like a hobby to drive a car, much like riding a horse is, because it’s irrational and unsafe.

FORTUNE: Do you think the legacy automakers can keep up?

CHUNG: They cannot keep up. They’re going to play because they can be late followers, but the leaders are clearly going to be companies like Tesla, Google [and its parent Alphabet], Uber, and we’ll see if Apple still is playing in the automotive field. And the important part, I mean, the car may say GM on it, but if they have to license the automated driving technology from somebody else, if they have to purchase better electronics from the outsource, then the value in the car might increasingly go to the technology leaders as opposed to GM.

DEETER: I would just add there’s over a dozen automotive companies spending over a billion dollars each toward the combination of this autonomy and electrification wave. And so I give GM, Ford, and Daimler some credit. They’ve been acquisitive but also have invested internally.

FORTUNE: Let’s talk about inflation. You’ve had the Federal Reserve signaling that it’s going to continue to tighten interest rates, and you’ve had some wage growth that might move the needle a little bit. How is that affecting your strategy?

VAN VALEN: We’ve been talking about when interest rates will rise for five years now, so it is a little bit of a relief to actually be in an environment where interest rates are rising.

That’s true even for sectors like utilities, which everyone assumes will be challenged. Utilities have performed in line or better than the S&P 500 since the first interest rate hike in 2015 here in the U.S. So as long as you’re focusing on the right utilities, not just high-yielding companies, but companies that actually have the cash flows and the growth to support their cash returns back to shareholders, we think that the rising interest rate environment is actually a good thing as long as it is a reflection of improvement in the economy.

And even the utilities sector is benefiting from technology, for example with smart meters. Smart meters mean not having to employ as many people to go out when there’s a storm. You don’t have to drive around the block to figure out where the tree fell that knocked down the power line because the smart meter can tell you this immediately. PPL (PPL, -1.68%) is an example of a company currently investing in a smart-meter replacement project that is modernizing the power grid to make it more resilient. This smart-meter project does contribute to the rate base, earnings and cash flow growth, which ultimately helps drive the growth in the dividend.

SUBRAMANIAN: The Fed has been printing a lot of money, and normally you see inflation alongside that. And we haven’t.

One interesting trend that we’re noticing in the U.S. is this growing scarcity of labor within more manual-labor-oriented jobs. So for example, our industrials analysts, our transports analysts have been writing about the fact that these companies can’t find manual labor types of workers. And the reasons are pretty unusual. There is a larger percentage of people addicted to opioids, and that’s shrunk the pool of available workers. There’s a higher incarceration rate. And we’ve also noticed that the average, you know, typically male members of society that sign up for these jobs are playing more video games.

But this scarcity is actually showing up in margins. So you’re seeing homebuilders, for example, having to pay higher and higher wages to court these workers back from other activities. It is a trend that’s just starting to percolate, and you are starting to see margins in those industries under some pressure.

The million-dollar question is whether they will have pricing power, whether the economy gets strong enough that consumers are willing to pay the higher prices that offset the cost increase.

普信集团股票和多种资产首席投资官大卫·吉诺斯
Photograph by Spencer Heyfron for Fortune

《财富》:说到付更高价格,我非常想谈谈亚马逊效应,不仅在零售方面,也包括其涉足的各个领域。

吉诺斯:马特。我觉得这个问题比亚马逊效应要大得多。我做这行已经19年了,从来没见过现在这么多颠覆。我们谈了一点无人驾驶汽车,对通用汽车或福特会有什么影响。也可以想想页岩油。页岩油确实颠覆了OPEC还有能源大佬们。

我们还可以从技术角度谈谈区块链怎么颠覆资金转账,影响未来的保险公司。几乎每个领域都在发生变化。如果有领域没变化,我猜过段时间业内公司的估值也会比过去提升。

钟:市场上确实有这种趋势,消费领域公司借用亚马逊模式就能做得好些,至少风险会低一点。明显的例子就是电子游戏公司,行业里有些著名品牌例如Take-Two Interactive和动视暴雪。但这些业务其实亚马逊做不了。

另一个例子是演唱会推广公司莱恩公司,主要做现场娱乐活动;旗下有特玛捷票务公司,还有场地表演和音乐节,所以有独特的广告机会,主要针对千禧一代年轻人。仔细想想就知道,这些都是人们珍惜的体验机会,但没法通过亚马逊实现。全食超市也是个明显的反例,是吧?亚马逊已经直接杀入非常传统的实体业务领域。

范瓦伦:这就是私人公司能凸显自己特色的机会。举供应商金宝汤为例,会员店造成了颠覆,美国有量贩超市好事多,还有遍布全球的山姆会员店。不能任由超市里打包卖六罐汤赠送点塑料容器,还享受折扣。利润肯定会受影响。所以金宝汤之类公司要坐下来仔细想想,怎样才能适应好新环境?如何采用不同的包装方式,提供不同的折价点,一方面确保零售商能赚到钱,另一方面也要想办法直通消费者。

所以现在改变的不只是零售业,消费者也在变,购物方式也在变。所有变化交织在一起,但从公司层面来看确实承受了很多压力,不仅要适应,还得迅速适应。在积极利用新技术迅速转变方面有个好例子,就是麦当劳。麦当劳一直在采取最新的技术手段,例如全球各地上线手机应用,还有店内电子点餐台,顾客购买和支付都由更多选择。此外,麦当劳还开始跟UberEats合作提供送餐服务。

《财富》:最近看到一些石油方面的新闻,例如委内瑞拉和沙特,要是五六年前油价可能会一飞冲天。但现在油价十分平稳。油价保持在55美元到65美元一桶会不会成为新常态?

吉诺斯:事实上我想说,五年前油价比现在低多了。现在我们有页岩油及时供应。可以随时打新井,三个月就能产油。由于业内巨头遭受巨大打击,回应方式就是减低成本,新出的海洋石油价格降到40美元到50美元,过去价格得到70美元,80美元才能多赚钱。

这里还要提一下无人驾驶和电动汽车。长远来看,对能源的需求是在降低的。所以当前是低成本且需求逐渐减少的情况下增加供应。如果你是长期投资者,那么未来五到十年降低能源投资比例比较明智。

钟:天然气价格很低,而且维持了一段时间。天然气在美国也是页岩油的副产品,可以满足大部分电器需要,是吧?天然气加上可再生能源是影响全球能源价格的重要因素。所以长期来看我们是偏负面的。

迪特尔:电池技术方面会有大笔投资,特斯拉市值很大一部分都是跟电池工厂Gigafactory相关的。由于跟中国竞争者打价格战,美国风投行业确实在太阳能电池上亏了些钱,但长期来看这个市场很大,不容忽视。

《财富》:所以看2018年的话,最大的风险在哪,最大的机会在哪?

迪特尔:我觉得最大的风险在地缘政治,涉及刚刚谈到的税改和移民政策,还有国际政局能否稳定。不过我认为经济和商业基本面还是比较强的。

机会方面,我们刚才对科技是经济发展主要推动力也谈到很多。技术领域内软件是最重要一部分,软件发展的未来就是云计算。所以从公司层面看到话,我们非常看好云计算。2016年云通讯公司Twilio上市,最近SendGrid也上市了。我认为2018年趋势推动下行业发展会更迅速。

《财富》:萨维塔,你怎么看?

萨布拉玛尼安:过去40年我们都习惯了低借贷成本,杠杆几乎免费,现金没什么收益,很快就要结束了。随着美联储收紧利率,情况会发生变化,说起来有点复杂,尤其是看标普指数里有些很像债券的股票。市场中有些领域在经济下行时表现不错,例如公共设施建设,但如果下行趋势由利率上升导致,可能表现也不会多好。

我觉得消费品版块里互联网和邮购可能不错,有些过气的实体零售店可能会继续一蹶不振,可能还会继续走低。

《财富》:丹,你认为呢?

钟:看到大笔资金流入指数、指数基金、量化投资策略,还有电脑导致的闪电崩盘,我其实有点担心。不一定会长期存在,但可能会出现剧变,有点恐怖。知道么,现在指数基金比场内交易的股票还多。股票最大的买家是本公司,因为现金流非常充足。所以供求严重失衡,我担心羊群效应下量化催动的资金能否理智。

我们对科技行业还是很乐观,包括软件、云计算以及软件即服务。各家公司都在适应数字世界。钱很多,但劳动力很缺。科技行业的人才很贵,所以现在公司应该多投资提升效率,为新一波商业革新做好准备。

我们最担心的是定价能力不足,增长又比较缓慢的公司。消费行业很多公司基本面都不太好。其实都是些历史悠久的公司,但千禧一代都不再感兴趣。我们也分析了服装和零售。很多过去的名牌现在你女儿并不喜欢。

FORTUNE: Speaking of not paying higher prices, I have been dying to talk about the Amazon effect, not just on retail but on all kinds of industries where it competes.

GIROUX: Matt. I think it’s much more broad than the Amazon effect really. I’ve been doing this for 19 years. I’ve just never seen more disruption in more sectors than I do today. We’ve already talked a little bit about autonomous cars, what impact that could have on GM, Ford. Or think about shale oil. Shale oil is really disrupting OPEC and the energy majors.

We talk about watching blockchain, from a technology perspective, disrupting money transfers or title insurers down the road. Almost every sector out there is going through some change. And those sectors that are not, my guess is over time those companies’ valuations will tend to go higher than they have historically.

CHUNG: There’s definitely been a trend in the market where companies in the consumer space fare better if they are Amazon-proof or at least seem less subject to risk. A great example is the video game companies. The industry has significant franchises like Take-Two Interactive (TTWO, -0.66%) and Activision Blizzard (ATVI, +1.99%). It’s not a skill set that Amazon has.

Another example is Live Nation (LYV, -1.56%), which is in the business of live entertainment; they own Ticketmaster, and they also own venues and music festivals, which gives them unique advertising opportunities, especially with millennials. If you think about it, these are experiences that people value, and they’re not Amazon-able. And Whole Foods is the most dramatic counterexample, right? Amazon has moved directly into one of the most brick-and-mortar businesses that there is.

VAN VALEN: This is where the individual companies are going to have to distinguish themselves. Take suppliers like Campbell’s Soup (CPB, +2.47%), for example. They had a disruption from club stores, the Costcos and the Sams of the world. You couldn’t just take six cans of soup and add some plastic around it and sell it for cheaper. That obviously would hurt your margins. So companies like Campbell’s have had to sit down and figure out, How do we operate within this new environment? How do we offer different packaging, different price points to make sure not only can we help the retailers survive, but also figure out how to get direct to consumers.

So it’s not just the changing retail, it’s also the changing consumer, and the consumer shopping differently. It’s all intertwined, but there’s certainly a lot of pressure on these companies to adapt and adapt quickly. An example of a company that has embraced technology and, therefore, adapted is McDonald’s (MCD, -0.59%). They continue to deploy technology solutions like their global mobile app and in-store kiosks, which ultimately give people more choice on how to order and how to pay. In addition, they have begun to partner with UberEats to offer delivery.

FORTUNE: Recent news we’ve seen from oil producers like Venezuela and Saudi Arabia have involved the kinds of events that five or six years ago would have sent oil prices through the roof. Instead they’ve been relatively stable. Is oil in the $55-to-$65-a-barrel range the new normal?

GIROUX: Actually I would argue that in five years oil will be dramatically lower than it is today. Today we have basically just-in-time production on shale. You can drill a new hole and actually have oil producing in three months. And as the majors have been disrupted by that, they’re responding by lowering their cost to be able to bring on new production offshore at $40 to $50, where they used to need $70, $80 to get good returns.

And again, we have to talk about autonomous vehicles and electric vehicles. Long term, the demand side of the equation for energy is also at a negative. So you have more supply at lower cost as well as declining demand. If you are a long-term investor, it makes a lot of sense to be underweight energy in the next five to 10 years.

CHUNG: Natural-gas prices are very low and have been for a while. It’s also a by-product of the shale revolution in the U.S. Natural gas is what powers most of our electricity needs, right? And that combined with renewables is another important trend that will affect energy prices globally. So we also have a negative long-term view.

DEETER: Battery technology continues to see heavy investments, and a large portion of Tesla’s market cap is actually Gigafactory related. The U.S. venture capital industry did lose money in solar as a result of the aggressive pricing from Chinese competitors, but the size of the market is too large to ignore long term.

FORTUNE: So for 2018, where do you see the greatest risk and the greatest opportunity?

DEETER: I think the biggest risk is geopolitical, both with tax and immigration policy, which we talked about, as well as international political stability. But I think the fundamentals of the economy and the businesses within the economy are quite strong.

On the opportunity side, we’ve talked a lot about how tech is the largest sector of economic growth. Software within tech is the biggest driver, and cloud computing is the future of software. And so as a firm, we have disproportionately bet on cloud computing. We took Twilio (TWLO, +1.93%) public in 2016, and SendGrid (SEND, -3.03%)just [recently]. And I think 2018 is very much a double-down year where that trend is going to accelerate even more.

FORTUNE: Savita, what’s your thinking?

SUBRAMANIAN: We’re at the end of a 40-year period where we got used to a very low cost of capital, where leverage was essentially free and cash yielded nothing. Moving from that scenario to an environment where the Fed is tightening, that’s going to be a little bit tricky, especially if you look at valuations of some of the most bond-like stocks in the S&P. There are areas of the market that typically do well in a downturn, like regulated utilities, that might not do as well in a downturn if that downturn is caused by a rate spike.

I think within the consumer discretionary sector, the Internet and catalog retailers might win, and some of the bombed out brick-and-mortar retailers might remain bombed out and even go lower.

FORTUNE: Dan, what do you think?

CHUNG: I’m a little worried about the massive amount of money that’s flowed into index, ETF, and quantitative-oriented strategies, and the chance of a computer-driven flash crash. It wouldn’t necessarily be something that is very long-lasting, but could be sharp and kind of scary. You know, there are now more ETFs than there are stocks. And companies are actually their biggest buyers of their own stocks because of their strong cash flow. So there’s been a real imbalance in supply-demand, and I worry about what all that quantitatively driven money will do if it tends to be herd-like.

We’re definitely most optimistic about tech—software, cloud computing, software as a service. Companies generally are adapting to the digital world. They have the money. Labor is scarce. Talented technology employees are very expensive, and so it’s exactly the right time when companies invest in these things to improve their efficiency and also to bring themselves into the next wave of business.

What we’re the most concerned about is actually low-growth companies without a lot of pricing power. We think a lot of the consumer staple names are not in good fundamental position. They are beloved historic companies, but they are just not the brands or the products that the millennials are interested in. Our analysis on that extends into apparel and retailing as well. They’re not your daughter’s fashion brand.

新时代投资公司董事总经理兼投资组合经理凯拉·范瓦伦
Photograph by Spencer Heyfron for Fortune

《财富》:凯拉,你觉得最大的风险和机会分别在哪?

范瓦伦:我不是很担心利率上升,或是升得快,即便真发生对一些防御性更强的领域也不会造成太大伤害。反正所有领域都会受到打击。

至于机会方面,我们认为技术是新的宏观面。在科技行业按股息水平选股不太容易,但技术对各个领域收入增长和利润水平的影响巨大。我的意思是利润可能会保持高水平。也就是说现金流可能会很高,所以股东能享受更多回报。

《财富》:大卫,总结一下?

吉诺斯:过去五年复合增长率在5%左右。如果2018年真能实现税改,利润增长率可能达到13%到15%,具体情况要看公司税怎么改。我认为总体来说市场情况向好,也会推动利润增长。

负面因素方面:如果看未来三到五年,现在的价值水平比较高。我也不清楚2018年会不会调整,但既然身处周期里相对高位,还是保守些比较稳妥。

《财富》:非常感谢各位。很荣幸能邀请各位来参加论坛。

 

专家选股:

截至2017年11月29日股价。

• 动视暴雪 (ATVI, $62)

• 胡椒博士(DPS, $89)

• 莱恩公司 (LYV, $46)

• 麦当劳 (MCD, $170)

• 珀金埃尔默 (PKI, $73)

• 辉瑞(PFE, $36)

• 腾讯 (TCEHY, $52)

• 赛默飞世尔科技 (TMO, $193)

(财富中文网)

本文另一版本刊登于2017年12月15日出版的《财富》杂志,标题为《投资人展望2018年圆桌论坛:行家都在买什么?》

译者:Pessy

FORTUNE: Kera, what’s your thinking—greatest risk, greatest opportunity?

VAN VALEN: I’m not actually concerned that interest rates are going to spike or rise too quickly, but were that to happen, I think that wouldn’t just be detrimental to the more defensive sectors, it would be detrimental to all sectors.

As far as opportunities go, we like to say tech is the new macro. If you’re looking at dividend stocks, it’s hard to find direct investments within the tech space. However, the influence that technology has across all sectors in terms of revenue growth and profitability is substantial. It means margins can stay at higher levels. It means cash flows can remain higher, leaving a lot more cash to continue to be returned to shareholders.

FORTUNE: David, last word?

GIROUX: We’ve basically grown earnings on a compound rate of about 5% per year for the last five years. If you actually had tax reform in 2018, you could see earnings growth that’s more like 13% to 15% potentially, depending on what the corporate rate does. I think that would be a positive for the market, sort of an acceleration in earnings growth.

In terms of negatives: If you have a three- to five-year horizon, you’re starting from a point where valuations are high. I don’t know if we’re going to have a correction in ’18, but I think it makes sense to be a little bit defensive where we are in the cycle.

FORTUNE: Thank you all so much. It’s been great to have you on the panel.

 

Picks From the Experts:

Stock prices as of Nov. 29, 2017.

• Activision Blizzard (ATVI, $62)

• Dr Pepper Snapple (DPS, $89)

• Illumina (ILMN, $228)

• Live Nation (LYV, $46)

• McDonald’s (MCD, $170)

• Perkinelmer (PKI, $73)

• Pfizer (PFE, $36)

• PPL (PPL, $37)

• SendGrid (SEND, $21)

• Take-Two Interactive (TTWO, $111)

• Tencent (TCEHY, $52)

• Thermo Fisher (TMO, $193)

• Twilio (TWLO, $26)

• Vertex (VRTX, $144)

• Illumina (ILMN, $228)

• PPL (PPL, $37)

• SendGrid (SEND, $21)

• Take-Two Interactive (TTWO, $111)

• Twilio (TWLO, $26)

• Vertex (VRTX, $144)

A version of this article appears in the Dec. 15, 2017 issue of Fortune with the headline “Investor’s Guide 2018 Roundtable: What Is the Smart Money Buying Now?”

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