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Buy Undervalued Stocks in Fourth Quarter: Strategists

Undervalued stocks will represent opportunities for long-term investors in the final quarter of the year and are not necessarily an indication of a return to the stock market slides of 2008/2009, according to strategists and investors.

Trader at London Stock Exchange, England.
AP
Trader at London Stock Exchange, England.

But, some analysts said, investors should look to emerging markets and the tech sector for the best opportunities.

"People talk of de-risking from equities to bonds, I would argue at the moment de-risking is moving from bonds which are in bubble territory into equities… they look good value," Nick Lyster, CEO of Principle Global Investors told CNBC.

Lyster warned it was important to remain defensive in the current market, but he said the technology sector continued to represent good opportunities for investors willing to persevere, due in part to emerging market demand.

"I think you have to be picky in what you buy, we would stay defensive absolutely, but there are some sectors where there probably is going to be a lot of growth… technology for example," he said.

Describing consumer electronic goods as a "necessity" similar to food and everyday items, Lyster also claimed demand in emerging markets would continue to drive the sector, despite "a few hiccups" over the next few years.

"Longer-term they're going to have to increase their productivity, there's going to be massive investment from those countries in technology, so there are certain sectors where you can see growth extend for many years ahead," he explained.

Lyster's views were echoed by Norman Villamin, Head of Investment Strategy for Asia at Coutts who pointed to large companies operating in Asia and tech and utility firms in the region as representing good investment opportunities.

"A couple of things look interesting to us, we do think investment grade bonds, very high quality bonds, high quality corporates around the world," Villamin told CNBC.

"Even if you want to stay in Asia, the stories of dividends remain very strong stories in China, in Asia things like utilities, things like telecom companies in China, where dividend yields look very rich are attractive to us… we think those will help you weather the storm as we come through this crisis," he added.

He added that rather than go directly to source in Asia, which can prove risky for investors, Villamin said a "viable alternative" for investors was to purchase reliable stocks in companies that invest heavily in the region.

Playing Down a Crash

Ian Scott, Chief Global and European Strategist at Nomura added that stocks represent good value in the medium term; he believes the current slump in equity markets does not represent a return to 2008/2009.

"The market is priced at an extremely cheap level, so back in line with the level we saw at the end of 2008 and 2009, so the question is are we in a similarly stressed situation to that period? I think at the moment, the answer to that has to be 'no', therefore we think over the medium term stocks represent good value," Scott said.

Scott conceded there could be no guarantees that global markets would avoid a meltdown similar to the period after the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September 2008 when the Dow Jones Industrial Index fell to 6,600 points in a six month period from a peak of 14,000 in 2007.

"It is different at the moment; I don't think anybody can give any guarantees that things aren't going to evolve in a worse way, but where the market is priced now relative to the fundamentals that are in place at the moment… the market's gone a lot further in discounting that extreme scenario," Scott said.

"Remember the cycle that we saw in 08/09 was an economic cycle, the worst since the '30s and for stocks to go and discount a similar occurrence this time around which is really what we think they've done, is taking things a long way," he added.

Lyster agreed, telling CNBC: "There might be a recession, but if there is it's likely to be a mild one, we're not where we were in 2009."

Contact Europe: Economy

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