Talking Point 

UK investor confidence doubles in a year

UK investor confidence doubles in a year

Confidence levels among UK investors has doubled over the past year, with UK and Japanese equities in particular favour, according to Lloyds Private Bank.

The data is contained in the latest Lloyds Private Bank investor sentiment index (ISI).

Investor confidence has moved to 4.81 per cent in its November survey, compared with 2.19 per cent in the same month last year.

The starkest uplift in confidence was in sentiment towards Japanese shares, with investor confidence at a four year high, moving from 8.2 per cent to 12.48 per cent.

In the UK, the picture was more mixed. Sentiment towards the property and bond markets was negative, probably as a result of higher interest rates, while sentiment towards UK equities improved.

Confidence rose from 4.45 per cent to 3.94 per cent.

In contrast, sentiment towards the traditional safe haven asset classes of gold and UK government bonds has weakened over the past month.

Markus Stadlmann, chief investment officer at Lloyds Private Bank, said: “It’s no surprise to see Japanese equities attracting positive attention, although our team has slightly cooled on them recently as we believe future performance may be weaker than we initially thought.

"That said, we still expect Japanese equities to outperform other stock markets in the near future.

“With holiday season nearly upon us, we wait to see if investors can end the year on a high.

"More than anything else sentiment will depend on the geopolitical environment on both sides of the pond with Brexit and US tax plans being key themes influencing financial markets and whether they end the year on a high or a low.”

david.thorpe@ft.com

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