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March 29, 2019

Investor sentiment in March sees biggest monthly increase since 2016

By James Crawley

March saw a 5% increase in investor sentiment from February, according to Lloyds Private Banking, for the biggest month-on-month increase since August 2016.

Investor sentiment though remains 9.4% lower than March 2018.

Eurozone shares saw their first improvement in sentiment of the year, raising by 4.3% for the month, but remains 22.2% lower than a year ago.

Despite ongoing Brexit uncertainty, investor sentiment towards UK shares saw a 7.8% increase.

Jon Wingent, Lloyds Private Banking’s head of portfolio specialists, says: “With most stock indices increasing, it comes as no surprise that rising investor sentiment is a reflection of this activity.

“However these levels remain lower than last year, and could be driven by poor performance of risk assets in 2018.”

Sentiment grew across all asset classes survey in Lloyd Private Banking’s study apart from gold and cash, which fell by 2.2% and 0.6% respectively.

“Although gold has traditionally been perceived as a safer commodity for investors,” Wingent continues, “its price has declined from an 11-month high in March.

“The sentiment may suggest that the stability previously seen for this asset category could be nearing an end.

“A strong US dollar and rising equity markets been exerting pressure on the price.”

Gold experienced a sell-off yesterday, to which George Gero, managing director at RBC Wealth Management, has commented that this may represent a buying opportunity.

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