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Investors bullish on Asia-Pacific equities

Investor sentiment towards the generally high risk/high reward Asia-Pacific region (excluding Japan) is improving as risk appetite improves, equities gain favour and cash becomes less popular.

Nine out of 10 fund managers polled in HSBC’s quarterly Fund Managers Survey hold a positive view on Asia-Pacific ex Japan equities in the third quarter of 2009, well up from only 45% in the previous quarter.

Bruno Lee, HSBC’s regional head of wealth management for Asia-Pacific, said: “We see that improving market performance, combined with some signs of economic recovery especially in Asia-Pacific and emerging markets, are buoying investor sentiment for equities as people actively seek growth opportunities.

“Investors remain positive about Greater China equities, given the stellar performance of the stock market and positive signs of economic development in the region over the past few months.”

Emerging markets equities, Asia-Pacific ex-Japan equities and Greater China equities all posted inflows in the second quarter.

However, North American and European equities saw outflows in the quarter.

Fund managers’ views on bonds have moved from positive to neutral, with only 30% bullish on bonds in the third quarter.

But cash has fallen out of favour, with 57% taking an underweight view on cash (compared to 25% in the second quarter) and no fund managers overweight on cash (25% in last quarter).

In August HSBC introduced four HSBC Global Unit Trusts into the New Zealand market, managed by subsidiary HSBC Investments New Zealand.

The four New Zealand dollar denominated funds are the HSBC China Fund, the HSBC India Fund, the HSBC BRIC Fund and the HSBC Asia ex Japan Fund.

More by Niko Kloeten