December 2, 2021

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Americans Wrong to Boost Cash; Seek Credit, UBS Wealth Says

(Bloomberg) — Americans have been piling into cash amid uncertainty around the impact of the coronavirus, according to UBS Global Wealth Management, which says that strategy isn’t the answer.

“Rushing to the exits may feel like a safe choice for those uncomfortable with the rally or unresolved Covid-19 risks,” Chief Investment Officer Mark Haefele wrote in a note Tuesday. But “with yields on savings and money-market funds so low, we think investors will need to consider diversifying into riskier, higher-yielding assets such as lower-quality credit or stocks,” he wrote.

Read more: World’s Richest Are Waiting for New Dip in Stocks Before Buying

Cash piles soared by more than $1 trillion over an eight-week period as coronavirus fears deepened — to around $4.7 trillion, according to UBS estimates.

The S&P 500 Index tumbled 34% from its February record to its low in March as investors fled while the pandemic spread. While markets have bounced back thanks to record stimulus measures, most projections indicate the pandemic will continue to affect markets for months or even years.

UBS Wealth’s recommendations include:

Going into credit over cash, with particular value seen in U.S. high-yield credit, U.S. investment grade credit, dollar-denominated emerging-market sovereign bonds and green bondsGetting off the sidelines with an averaging-in strategy, plus being selective in stocks with particular opportunity in select cyclicals, stable and defensive stocksBuying into themes given a boost by Covid-19, including e-commerce, fintech, automation, robotics and genetic therapies

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