Global financial markets have shown signs of settling down after the deep sell-off of risk assets as a result of pandemic-driven economic concerns and the subsequent sharp rebound.
Policy-makers in China changed policy direction by implementing new security measures in Hong Kong and removing a target for GDP growth. These economic cum political decisions should continue to make Chinese assets attractive for global investors, though they could pose a relative headwind for other Emerging Markets. Yet, market dynamics will depend more on how DM countries manage their exits from lockdown.
Success in EM investing requires recognizing how companies and countries are evolving during the COVID-19 pandemic. We assess market liquidity, corporates’ flexibility to change and valuations to identify opportunities.
The COVID-19 pandemic represents both a serious public health and economic threat for emerging markets. The crisis has dented emerging market growth prospects and reversed years of strong performance.
The COVID-19 crisis has taken shape as a liquidity shock to global markets, resulting in substantial outflows and plunging prices in EM. It will be some time before EM investors are able to align their decision making to fundamentals. At this point, liquidity is the key factor to watch.
It’s hard to believe that, as I approach my 50th year, more than half of my life has been focused on analyzing emerging markets. My first real market panic was the Mexican Peso/Tequila crisis, which seemed about as bad as anything I could imagine.