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Record chase and no end

The record chase on the stock markets has continued unabated over the past two weeks. And once again, it was not only the Magnificent Seven from the USA that set the tone, but the stock markets in Germany, the UK and Switzerland also continued to rise. This time, the stock markets were driven by the prospect of interest rate cuts, which will hopefully take place soon, even if the inflation data at the current margin rather point to a flattening of the disinflation trend. Although inflation in the eurozone fell to 2.6% in February (core inflation 3.1%), the consensus had expected a sharper decline. In the US, the Fed's preferred "Core PCE Price Index" stood at 2.8% in January (previous month: 2.9%), the lowest figure since March 2021. Meanwhile, the labour market report from the US sent mixed signals. Although job growth of 275,000 was well above consensus expectations, the figures for the two previous months, which were originally very strong, were revised downwards significantly. In addition, the unemployment rate rose unexpectedly from 3.7% to 3.9%. A certain tendency towards a cooling of employment demand and thus a slowdown in economic momentum can certainly be seen from this data.

It remains to be seen how the Fed will interpret this piece of data and whether there will be any new information at next week's meeting of the US Federal Reserve regarding the start of the first interest rate cut. The futures markets are currently pricing in June for the first rate cut. For the eurozone, ECB President Christine Lagarde has already quite clearly signaled June as the starting point for the beginning of the interest rate cut cycle. Hopes of an early start to the interest rate cuts caused interest rates to fall in the reporting period, leading to gains in bond prices. Ten-year US government bonds fell to 4.08%, while the ten-year German government bond closed at 2.27%. Investment-grade corporate bonds and high-yield bonds also benefited from the positive interest rate trend. However, due to their lower interest rate sensitivity, their price gains were lower than those of government bonds. The bond side of the Moventum portfolios also benefited from the positive interest rate environment and recorded gains. However, the shorter duration positioning implemented in the portfolios, which had brought stability to the portfolio in recent weeks, resulted in lower returns. This was counteracted by the negative performance of US equities from the perspective of the euro investor. The negative performance of emerging markets, led by the Chinese stock market, also had a negative impact on the portfolios. Despite the fall in interest rates, value stocks outperformed significantly in the USA, whereas the portfolios are positioned with a growth tilt. Nevertheless, the technology sector outperformed and the portfolios benefited from this. However, stocks from the overweighted healthcare sector were not in demand during the reporting period. The friendly market environment for equities and bonds led to price gains in all Moventum portfolios over the past two weeks. The adverse effects of the growth focus and EM exposure on the equity side were more than compensated for by good fund selection.

The PWM portfolio performed positively in the past two weeks, with all bond funds contributing to this alongside the long-only equity funds. HANSAgold benefited to some extent from the new record highs in gold. The mixed funds showed a mixed picture, as they deliberately use complementary investment approaches. In contrast, movements in alternatives were manageable. Among the equity funds, the products of GQG Partners were ahead, benefiting from their exposure to the tech sector.On the equity side, the Moventum portfolios benefited from the outperformance of the Japanese equity market.



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