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Euro crisis the biggest threat to returns

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27/02/2012
Advisers say that the eurozone sovereign debt crisis poses the greatest risk to investment returns in 2012.

According to a survey at an Alpha Generators event today, which polled 366 delegates including IFAs and wealth managers, ongoing problems in the eurozone and low economic growth constitute the primary concerns for intermediaries.

 Three quarters cited the eurozone debt crisis as most likely to hit investment returns. A similar propotion (73%) of respondents also said they felt the eurozone would be better off without Greece.

 The results arrived on the same day Euro ministers agreed a second bailout for the beleaguered Mediterranean state. Amid the ongoing troubles in the eurozone, investment advisers are looking further afield for returns.

 From an asset allocation perspective, almost two-thirds (61%) said they expect to increase allocations to emerging market equities in the coming months. A further 58% are looking to up exposure to global equities and 57% to US equities.

 On a region basis, respondents expected the US, Asian and BRIC economies will offer the best risk/return profiles for investors this year.

 “The findings of the survey show the eurzone crisis and low economic growth are the main concerns of IFAs, wealth managers and multi-managers,” said OBSR joint managing director Richard Romer-Lee.

 “It is encouraging to see advisers looking at the full spectrum of asset classes and regions on offer as a means of providing client solutions.”

 Bestinvest senior investment adviser, Adrian Lowcock, said Asia is an area where active managers can add real value. He said 2012 could be a strong year for Japan, as it looks particularly cheap from a risk/return perspective.

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