Risk appetite turns negative
The economic backdrop and monetary conditions were not as supportive for markets.
- Many equity markets tumbled, and European stocks underperformed.
- The technology sector and other winners of the pandemic continued to outperform.
- Emerging-market equities rose, boosted by China.
- Fixed income assets were mixed as convertible bonds and investment-grade corporate debt fell.
- U.S. Treasury bonds sold off, and yields rose.
This 10-year illustration captures the cyclicality of investors' appetite for risk.
Eruption and subsequent clearing of concerns over EU sovereign debt crisis, U.S. debt ceiling, and fear of China hard landing drive major risk sell-off and rally.
March '16–Jan '18
Risk assets rally amid improving commodity prices, perceived stability in China's macro data, and expectations for gradualist Fed policy.
March '20–presentThe coronavirus pandemic has created large swings in global risk appetite.
Source: Putnam. Data as October 31, 2020. To create the Global Risk Appetite Index, we weigh the monthly relative returns of 30 different asset classes over 3-month T-bills relative to the trailing 2-year volatility of each asset class. The higher the relative return and the lower the volatility, the greater the risk appetite; conversely, the lower the relative return and the higher the volatility, the stronger the risk aversion.