sabato 1 gennaio 2011

Il 2010 in poche figure. Un anno da incorniciare per le small caps.

Due figure le ho prese dal Wall Street Journal di ieri: ecco la prima che riassume l'andamento di 8 asset

la seconda invece mostra la distribuzione dei rendimenti delle azioni che compongono l'indice S&P500 negli ultimi quattro anni

Ma le vere soprese nel 2010 sono venute dalle small cap e dai prodotti agricoli:  

There were several noted areas of out-performance. Small caps, as measured by the Russell 2000 index, jumped 26%. Real estate investment trusts also rose, with the Dow Jones Equity All REIT index surging 23.2%. Tech favorites Apple, Netflix and F5 Networks catapulted up by 53.6%, 226.4% and 150% respectively.(...) Agricultural commodities, a traditionally volatile sector, saw unusually extreme price swings. Coffee prices hit a 13-year high this week after a spate of adverse weather, and are up 73.8% on the year. Sugar hit 30-year highs this week before collapsing again. Summer wildfires in Russia and a ban on that country's wheat exports sent wheat prices up by 45% in the third quarter alone. Cotton hit a 140-year high in December—not adjusted for inflation—while corn and soybeans rose 48.6% and 31.4% respectively this year.

La spiegazione dell'extra-performance delle small caps sembra essere nei tassi di interesse ai minimi storici e dalle politiche in atto nei paesi emergenti:

Small-cap companies tend to be more sensitive to a change in rates than large caps, says Daniel Sanborn at Ned Davis Research. That should give the sector a boost if the Fed keeps interest rates low, as it has promised. When the real yield on three-month U.S. Treasury bills falls to 0.4% or lower, small caps outperform large caps by 12 percentage points a year, according to Ned Davis Research. The real yieldon a three-month bill is now about 0.15%.
Small companies also benefit when emerging markets try to prevent their economies from overheating. China raised its benchmark interest rate 0.25% on December 26, while Brazil's central bank signaled a rate hike by calling inflation conditions "far less favorable" on December 23. That has some economists expecting the U.S. to take the global growth baton from emerging markets.
If that happens, small companies, which get only 32% of their profits from overseas, may get a boost. Companies in the S&P 500, on the other hand, get 54% of their earnings from international operations, according to Ned Davis Research.

La corsa delle small cap sembra inarrestabile ma non è priva di rischi:

There are still big risks for small caps. (...) small caps may suffer if the yield on the 10-year note rises above 4% or the economy showed signs of slowing. They're also anything but cheap. Small caps are trading at 27.9 times their profits from the past 12 months, above their long-term average of 23.2 times. Large caps trade at about 15.6 times. 

Se volete dare un'occhiata ai fondamentali degli indici U.S.A. vi consiglio di utilizzare questi links: qui trovate i rapporti prezzo/utili e prezzo/valore di libro per gli indici Dow Jones e per l'indice S&P500 (large caps) mentre qui trovate quelli relativi all'indice Russell2000 (small caps).

But small caps can run ahead of the pack for quite some time, even with high valuations. The median period of small-cap outperformance lasts nearly five years, according to Leuthold Group research. The S&P 600 outran the S&P 500 every year from 2000 through 2006; the current run of small-cap outperformance has lasted more than two and a half years. Says Leuthold's Andy Engel: "The momentum's in small caps."

L'Economist riassume il 2010 in nove figure: le vorrei riprodurre tutte ma mi sembra ingiusto nei confronti del settimanale britannico: eccone un paio, le altre le trovate qui 

Il grafico sull'andamento delle obbligazioni governative dei BPIIGS (!) ci aiuta a restare con i piedi per terra e a ricordarci come i guai per l'eurozona non siano finiti: ecco le previsioni 2010 e 2011 a confronto per GDP, debito e disoccupazione

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