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2018年存在哪些风险?投资者知道这些就够了

彭博社 2018年01月06日

2018年将是各种风险汇聚的一年,是你必须始终保持警惕的一年。

在无数次特朗普深夜推文的咆哮中,在史上最高的股价中,在比特币的一路狂飙中,2017年就这样结束了。

进入2018年,资产价值的稳步增长和波动性的衰减似乎已经成了“新常态”,全球经济增长保持稳健,各个资产类别都弥漫着乐观情绪。但现在还不是我们骄傲自满的时候。

我们必须看到,随着一些政策行将就木,一些热门交易无疾而终,2018年将是各种风险汇聚的一年,是你必须始终保持警惕的一年。以下就是2018年全球市场上最重要的一些问题,这些问题或许令你喜忧参半,不过却不失为了解新的一年全球市场动态的一个好的切入点。

债务投资趋冷

诚然,一部分人的垃圾债大爆发之说已经被证明是杞人忧天,高收益债券和投资级债券预计今年都会给投资者带来回报。然而在债券领域,投资者2018年面临的风险也不少。美联储目前正在缩表,欧洲央行放缓了购债计划,有预测显示,今年的通胀率终于会有所上升。

据美银美林12月发布的一项调查显示,债权投资者普遍认为,泡沫是该资产类别面临的最大风险,紧随其后的是高通胀和高债息。市场的现金流情况就反应了投资者的这种不安心理。据彭博社数据显示,去年12月,市场出现了近14个月以来投资者首次从企业债交易所基金中大规模抽资的情况。

商业周期老化

根据美国全国经济研究局和彭博情报的数据,如果美国经济2018年上半年能够继续保持当前增速,则美国经济将基本达到现代史上第二长的发展周期。

美国经济的稳健复苏,有助于促进全球经济发展,激发各个市场的乐观情绪。花旗银行的主要经济体惊喜指数目前已逼近2010年以来的最高水平,不少单项数据还超过了分析师的预期。

2018年,面临金融过热和企业增资增债等种种风险,投资者必须谨慎评估美国当前的经济增长周期还能维持多久。

选举风险

在全球经济稳健增长、美联储采取谨慎货币政策和弱势美元等因素刺激下,2017年,新兴市场货币及股票迎来了8年来的最高收益。不过这种短暂繁荣或许不会持续太久,尤其是据华尔街预测,发达国家的货币政策或将迎来近十年来的最大紧缩幅度。

2018年也是很多国家的大选年。彭博-巴克莱发展中国家本地债券指数中的半数以上国家今年都将迎来大选。虽然像俄罗斯等国的选举结果是不难预测的,但在巴西和墨西哥等国家,目前的选情却相当胶着。

欧元升值

2017年,欧元兑美元汇率创下了14年来的最佳水平。2018年,欧元相对美元或将继续升值。到今年年底,欧元兑美元汇率升值到1:1.229的概率大约是三分之二,升值到1:1.256的概率也在五成。

利率掉期“正常化”

后经济危机时代美国监管机构催生出的一种怪象或将于今年终结。今年,美国的利率掉期(即企业支付一部分费用,将固定利率改换为浮动利率)有望自2014年来首次超过所有期限的美国国债收益率。

有市场策略师预测,共和党政府打算废除后经济危机时代部分监管负担的计划,有望使持有美国国债变得更有吸引力,进而会推动债息再次低于利率掉期。这一变动的意义是相当重大的,因为很多以借贷资金采购的债务工具都是以利率掉期为基准的,如许多房贷和车贷证券等。

波动性回归

2017年,波澜不惊的市场令很多投资者都深感意外。但2018年,很多投资者将发现,市场价格波动将再次成为生活的常态。

阿耳特弥斯资本公司的克里斯托弗·科尔去年10月指出,市场上有超过2万亿美元的投资资本是依赖市场稳定来生钱的。如果市场波动性再次加强,全球股票和债券市场或许都会面临巨大的损失风险。

美联储的新面孔

杰罗米·鲍威尔将不会是今年美国央行唯一的新面孔。随着副主席珍妮特·耶伦的任期于2月结束,美联储纽约银行负责人于年中退休,美联储的“三巨头”(主席、副主席和美联储纽约银行总裁)都将在年内迎来换血。

今年,美联储的这几位新东家必须要在劳动力市场收紧、经济稳健增长与消费价格放缓之间进行权衡。如果出现通胀飙升的局面,他们将如何应对?如果美国经济继续顽固地保持弱通胀,他们又会采取哪些手段?

收益曲线

长短期国债之间的息差收窄仍是华尔街关注的一个问题。完全趋平或反转的收益曲线有可能引发债券交易动荡,对美联储的紧缩政策形成挑战,并引发经济周期的下行风险。

彭博社在12月初访问了11名分析师,其中有6人表示,美联储的收益曲线在未来24个月内至少会出现一次短暂的反转,更有4人表示,这种情况在2018年就会发生。

别忘了中国

2017年,全球市场最引人注目的两大动向,一是美国股市的飙升,二是中国政府债券的下跌。尽管标普500的估值还在被人反复分析,但作为全球最大的新兴经济体,中国债券市场的展望却令人相当难以索解。

渣打银行中国宏观经济研究负责人刘洁(Becky Liu)指出,随着中国央行采取紧缩性的货币政策,以及政府进一步加强金融监管,2018年上半年,中国债券仍将承受较大压力。不过到了下半年,债息的提高或许将吸引国内外投资者。

数字货币狂潮

比特币的火箭式升值何时会停止?答案取决于你问的是谁。对冲基金经理迈克尔·诺沃格拉茨认为,到第一季度结束时,比特币或将升值至40000美元。看涨比特币的人表示,近期比特币期权的建立将进一步吸引更多人持有比特币,因为金融交易衍生品往往就是通往ETF基金和其他流动性工具的第一步。

不过怀疑论者表示,不能排除监管机构对比特币“下手”的可能性。比如伦敦的ADM国际投资者服务公司的全球策略师马克·奥斯特沃德表示,如果政府部门开始实施反洗钱法,很多数字加密货币的发展或将被就此打住。(财富中文网)

译者:朴成奎

And just like that, the year in which we learned to live with late night Twitter rants from a U.S. president, record-high stock prices and the bitcoin bubble comes to a close.

As we enter 2018, steadily rising assets and diminishing volatility have become the norm, global growth remains strong, and optimism prevails across asset classes. Yet now isn’t the time for complacency.

Between politics and popular trades losing luster, there are boundless risks to keep you on your toes for the next 12 months. Here are some of the most important market themes — both reassuring and unsettling — to get you started.

Cooling Credit Rally

Sure, cries of a junk bond Armageddon have proved premature, with both high-yield and investment-grade bonds handing investors returns for the year, but plenty of risks threaten the upside in 2018. The Federal Reserve is unwinding its balance sheet, the European Central Bank is slowing purchases and forecasts show inflation may finally rise.

Credit investors polled by Bank of America Merrill Lynch for a survey published in December named a bubble as the biggest risk to the asset class, followed by higher inflation and rising yields. Flows reflect some of that unease. Investors pulled money out of exchange-traded funds that track corporate credit for the first time in 14 months in December, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Ageing Business Cycle

If the U.S. economy can keep chugging along through the first quarter of 2018, it will match the second-longest expansionary period in modern history, according to data compiled by the National Bureau of Economic Research and Bloomberg Intelligence.

That’s helping to lift global economies, spurring optimism across markets. The Citigroup economic surprise index of major economies hovers just under its highest level since 2010 after a slew of data surpassed analyst expectations.

In the year ahead, investors will have to assess the sustainability of the cycle amid risks of financial overheating and corporate America’s levered balance sheets.

Mind the Elections

Rising global growth, the Fed’s cautious approach to monetary tightening and a weaker dollar helped emerging-market currencies and stocks post their biggest returns in eight years in 2017. But it might not take much to knock that equilibrium, especially with Wall Street forecasting the biggest tightening of developed-world monetary policy in a decade.

Investors will also have to maneuver around elections in countries that make up more than 50 percent of a Bloomberg Barclays developing-nation local bond index. While votes in countries like Russia are predictable, tight contests are on the cards for fellow market heavyweights like Brazil and Mexico.

Euro Rally Lives

As the euro heads toward its best annual run against the dollar in 14 years, options markets that price probabilities on the world’s most traded currency pair point to the rally continuing in 2018. There’s a two-thirds probability that it appreciates as high as $1.229 by year end, while the odds that it rises to $1.256 are even.

‘Normal’ Swaps

One of the stranger distortions created by post-crisis regulation may be poised to end. Swap rates, what companies pay to exchange their fixed interest payments for floating ones, are on track to rise back above Treasury yields across all maturities for the first time since 2014.

Strategists predict Republicans’ plans to roll back post-crisis regulatory burdens will make holding Treasuries more attractive, thus pushing yields below swap rates again. The shift matters because swap rates serve as a benchmark for a variety of debt instruments purchased with borrowed funds, including mortgage-backed and auto-loan securities.

Volatility Return

In 2017, investors were caught off guard by the near-complete absence of volatility. In 2018 they could get a wakeup call from price fluctuations roaring back to life.

Over $2 trillion in strategies are effectively reliant on market stability to generate returns, according to October estimates from Artemis Capital’s Christopher Cole. That raises the risk of outsize losses across stock and bond markets around the world if volatility finally returns.

Fed Fresh Faces

Jerome Powell won’t be the only new kid in class at the U.S. central bank next year. The “Big Three” (chair, vice chair and New York Fed president) will be completely different after Janet Yellen’s stint in charge ends in February and the head of the New York Fed retires in the middle of the year.

They’ll have to weigh a tight labor market and sound economic data against muted consumer prices. How will they react if inflation roars back to life? And what if it remains stubbornly weak?

Yield Curve

The narrowing spread between short- and long-dated Treasuries continues to grab Wall Street’s attention. A completely flat — or inverted — curve has the potential to roil bond trades, challenge the Fed’s tightening path, and raises the risk of a downturn in the business cycle.

Six of 11 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg in early December said the Treasury yield curve will invert at least briefly within the next 24 months, with four projecting it in 2018.

Don’t Forget China

Two of the more remarkable moves in 2017 were soaring U.S. stocks and tumbling Chinese government bonds, according to a global analysis of historical price patterns that veer from the norm, known as standard deviations. While the S&P 500’s valuation is endlessly analyzed, the outlook for the world’s largest emerging debt market is far less understood.

Chinese bonds will come under pressure again in the first half of 2018 as the central bank tightens monetary policy and the government toughens financial regulations, according to Becky Liu, head of China macro strategy at Standard Chartered Plc. The rise in yields will attract domestic and foreign investors in the second half, she said.

Crypto Craze

How long can bitcoin’s parabolic increase last? It depends who you ask. Hedge fund manager Michael Novogratz thinks it will go all the way to $40,000 by the end of the first quarter. Bulls say the recent creation of futures will broaden crypto ownership because derivatives are the first step toward ETFs and other more liquid instruments.

The skeptics, however, points to a possible pin-prick by regulators. Cryptocurrencies “could be stopped in their tracks” if authorities began applying anti-money laundering laws, said Marc Ostwald, global strategist at ADM Investor Services International in London.

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