UK equities remain in favour

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The Independent Online
FUND managers are still bullish about British equities, according to Smith New Court's August survey of their opinions. A balance of 19 per cent said they intended to increase their holdings, a shade below the 20 per cent in July.

In four out of the previous five instances of a positive balance in the survey this year the market rallied in the subsequent month - probably because the institutions included dominate trading on the London Stock Exchange.

Peter Lyon, Smith New Court's chief strategist, said the survey was a slight lead indicator for the British market, but in most other categories the fund managers tended to follow the market.

Other favoured categories were Japanese equities, with a 24 per cent balance, 'all other' equities, with 28 per cent, and conventional and index-linked British gilts.

The fund managers on balance said they planned to reduce holdings of overseas bonds and sterling and foreign currency cash.

The asset allocation intentions mirror the fund managers' views on the outlook for different markets. Most respondents were optimistic about British equities and the Nikkei index, but were glum about the Dow Jones.