U.S. markets, particularly the riskiest areas of investment, are likely to benefit at least near term from the latest entrant to the central bank money-printing arena.
Following the lead of the Federal Reserve, the Bank of Japan last week announced an even more ambitious project to use created funds to buy assets in the hopes of boosting investment and inflation.
Considering the U.S. central bank already has pushed its balance sheet past $3 trillion, that's saying something.
Not to fear, though, that Japanese markets may begin to compete with the U.S. for investment money: Many experts figure that the BoJ's efforts will only complement, rather than divert from, the American central bank stimulus regime.
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"Money will go to where it's best treated," said Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist for Prudential Annuities. "We're on a scavenger hunt for yield, we're on a scavenger hunt for return. Right now, it's the U.S. market and the Japanese market."
The areas most likely to benefit from the BofJ announcement are Japanese equities, which have been on a parabolic rise since the market started anticipating central bank stimulus, as well as U.S. stocks and Treasurys and some global markets that maybe have underperformed but are ready to rebound.
"Ultimately, the BoJ intends to over-crowd the domestic market with their asset purchases," Priya Misra, rates strategist at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, said in a note to clients. "This would effectively force spillover demand to equity, overseas and other risk assets. US Treasurys should also benefit near term due to some crossover buying."
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With many investors anticipating a U.S. market pullback after its strong first-quarter rally, the BoJ announcement comes at an opportune time.