Although over the past decade a balanced, 60/40 portfolio has been considered an “effortless winner” for investors, a recent Bloomberg article says “now we live in extraordinary times that demand a reshuffle.”
“Swapping out some bonds for gold and some U.S. technology stocks for Chinese ones could offer a better hedge,” arguing that the “wreckage” caused by Covid-19 and the pandemic coupled with what seems to be a cold war with China is “the closest we’ve come to World War III. And just like wartime episodes of the past, we’re seeing disrupted supply chains, border lockdowns ad restricted movements in labor.”
The article notes that war is inflationary, adding that the Fed has been “flooding the financial system with cash” and is considering a “more relaxed stance toward inflation.” As the world faces inflationary pressure, it says, gold offers a better hedge than bonds given ultra-low rates.
The “war” we’re in with China, the article explains, is related to “domination over next-generation technology.” Although the U.S. currently has the advantage, it notes, “that edge is slipping away as we continue to battle the pandemic while China has it “relatively under control.”
“Since we’re at war,” the article says, “might it be smart to hedge against the possibility of losing?” It warns investors that it’s “high time to consider diversifying from U.S. stocks,” adding that big tech has become too dominant, with the top names accounting for more than 20% of the S&P 500 and its total gain this year.
But the article doesn’t suggest that investors gravitate toward China’s big tech companies, asserting that they face the same problems as U.S. big tech— “overbought stocks and impossible expectations.” Instead, it suggests that investors “do their homework on smaller hard-tech companies,” adding, “The truth is, once you identify a promising tech seedling, it doesn’t take a venture capitalist’s patience to watch it blossom. “