The start of 2019 brought an impressive rebound for global equities. After a bruising fourth-quarter sell-off, stocks bounced back despite concerns over slowing economic growth and downward earnings revisions. The Federal Reserve's decision to put rate hikes on hold boosted sentiment, as did signs of progress in the global trade conflict.
Is the rebound sustainable? A number of factors could support continued strength, including stimulus measures in China and a resolution in U.S.–China trade negotiations. In fact, with the potential for an uptick in economic growth, inflation is a risk that investors may be overlooking. On the other hand, European GDP has slowed materially and the United Kingdom is struggling with Brexit challenges. Pockets of recession around the globe are possible, which would not be favorable for equities.