60 seconds with our Head of thematic investing

60 seconds with our Head of thematic investing

May 2016

Hans Peter Portner, Head of Thematic Equities

Hans Peter Portner provides insight into the Global Megatrend Selection portfolio he manages and shares his views on the market.

Taking a step back

The biggest surprise for me over the recent months was the rapid decline in investor sentiment vis-à-vis healthcare related stocks. Two main factors contributed to this deterioration. Risk premia in the sector were shooting up as Hillary Clinton has started to criticize the industry on high drug prices. Furthermore many tax-driven deals had to be shelved as the US government started to put limits on M&A activity with the only goal of optimizing taxes. Consequently health-related stocks rolled over.

Hit & miss

The positive surprise was the turnaround in fundamentals in some emerging market stocks. The risk premium for Brazilian stocks has fallen in the context of a very likely impeachment of Dilma Rousseff. On top of this, water consumption is increasing after the severe drought in 2015.

Water represents the old economy, but this is a service that cannot be substituted. Without water, there is no life. 

On my radar

We are experiencing a bottoming out of the oil price which is helping commodity related stocks and will improve the sentiment towards emerging markets where we find a lot of value. Therefore, we have started to increase exposure to emerging markets. We invest in themes benefitting from several powerful megatrends, like the Focus on Healthcare or Demographic Developments.

On a more personal note

© Pictet Asset Management 2016