This week we chat with Stephanie Link. Stephanie is a managing director and equity portfolio manager for TIAA Global Asset Management. She manages large-cap equities primarily based in the US. She is also a CNBC contributor and appears regularly on Closing Bell and Halftime.
The Lead Left: Stephanie, what do you see when you look at the markets today?
Stephanie Link: Beginning last July, the shift we’ve seen in sectors and rotation is absolutely incredible. We expected 2016 to start soft, then recover, but we got it in spades. We knew there was a potential for resumption of growth. But if someone asked, “Do you realize you had a Trump portfolio?” The answer was no.
There’s been, of course, a balance sheet shift. The Bank of Japan and the European Central Bank have made significant changes on the policy front. Over the last several years, Global Central Bankers focused on monetary policies which drove rates lower – in some instances record low rates. What changed – and it began in July of 2016, was the shift in tone from doing just monetary policy programs worldwide to one that would accompany fiscal policy initiatives. And that led to the bottoming in rates – again in July of 2016. Rates have rallied over 100 bps from the lows, optimism has risen about improving global rates, and cyclical stocks have outperformed. That includes financial services, materials, industrials, technology and value (vs. growth) stocks.