ASR's Quarterly Asset Allocation Survey
Fieldwork dates: 19th Nov – 3rd Dec 2020.
No. of participants: 207, representing USD $4 trillion of assets under management.
Key takeaways from the Q4 survey:
• Most Optimistic Survey in its Six-Year History
• Global Reflation Dominates Asset Allocators’ Perceptions for 2021:
This is the most bullish result we have seen in six years of running
our Asset Allocation Survey. It is also one with the highest level
of conviction and one with the greatest risk of Groupthink.
Investors anticipate full-on Global Reflation in 2021.
• Policymakers Should be Worried that Investors are so Bullish:
Policymakers should be worried about this Survey … by the
gulf between how they see the macro prospects and what the
markets are discounting. Are their COVID responses beginning
to fuel a liquidity-driven bubble in risk assets?
• One ‘Tribe’ is not Enough to Make a Market:
This survey lacks the diverse opinions typical of previous surveys, with our cluster analysis tagging 81% of the panel as 'bullish' and just 19% 'bearish'. This crowding of views points to volatility if the consensus stance gets challenged by events.
Image shows: ASR Asset Allocation Survey: Composite Optimism Indicator
What is the survey about?
ASR’s Multi-Asset Survey is a survey of probabilities.
Every quarter we ask over 200 CIOs, asset allocators, economists, and multi-asset strategists about the outlook for financial markets for the next 12 months. However, instead of asking them about how they are positioned (as many surveys do), we are trying to map how they see the financial world in terms of probabilities, and then compare those probabilities with how often those events have actually occurred over the past decade
The ASR investor survey is different from other investor surveys:
We wish to help investors better understand the probability of specific market outcomes within a specific time period. What is the likelihood of a certain financial event occurring over the next 12 months? Respondents tick one of five options (very likely / somewhat likely / no strong opinion / somewhat unlikely / very unlikely). By attributing a notional probability to each option, we can estimate an overall probability.
Our survey focuses on investors who are responsible for having an investment outlook across a range of asset classes; other surveys tend to focus more on equity managers.
The survey is short: we only ask twenty questions on calls that we believe are central to how CIOs and multi-asset specialists perceive the outlook for financial markets.
Many surveys ask fund managers for their positioning and how they plan to change their exposure. Increasingly, investors view this as confidential information. We are not interested in investors’ positioning; we are interested in how they view different market outcomes.
The survey will allow us to compare fund managers’ probabilities with those implicit in the market. It should also allow us to identify ‘high conviction” calls (i.e. the highest probability events) as well as multi-asset outcomes where investors have the weakest conviction. We may also be able to flag polarising events, i.e. events where the majority of respondents have strong, opposing views and where few respondents are neutral.
Would you like to become a survey participant?
We are keen to hear from institutional investors who would like to participate in our surveys. All survey participants receive the full report for every survey completed.
Please fill in the form below to register your interest and a member of the team will be in touch.