markets and strategies
Investor confidence in the UK has hit a three-year low, according to JPMorgan Fleming.
In a recent company survey, 53% of investors sampled believed the stock market would be lower in six months. That compared to 48% after the 11 September terrorist attacks.
Just 21% were confident the market will have recovered in six months and 26% were undecided about the future.
Peter Brewster, head of market research, said: 'Clearly worries about war with Iraq, which have contributed to the FTSE100 recently hitting a fresh seven-year low, are continuing to dampen investor enthusiasm for equities. But we are also seeing other economic factors coming into play. In particular, there are now question marks over the sustainability of house price growth, and recent figures from the Bank of England show a decline in unsecured borrowing suggesting that consumers are tightening their belts and economic momentum is slowing.'
He added: 'Even though history shows us that buying equities during periods of extreme stress can produce significant returns as subsequent relief rallies kick in, most investors appear reluctant to invest in the current uncertain climate.'
The survey, which was carried out on behalf of JPMorgan Fleming by MarketMinder between 7 February and 13 February, involved a randomly selected national sample of around 500 private investors.
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