Rio, BHP Selloff 'Irrational,' Time to Buy: Pro
Global miners BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto saw their Australia-listed shares fall 8.5 percent and 9.6 percent, respectively in last week's market selloff, but one expert feels the stocks were oversold and now is the time to buy back.
Simon Robinson, Director at investment management firm Raven Capital, told CNBC's "Cash Flow" on Tuesday that his firm bought "significant holdings" of BHP and Rio late last week on behalf of clients, as they believed the selloff was "irrational."
"It was one of our high conviction calls to allocate capital into BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto. 14 days ago Rio was at A$68 ($67.50), bottoms out at A$54 (on Monday)- that's a huge move to the downside," he said.
Last week's market carnage may have been largely due to concerns over the future of the euro zone, but both Rio and BHP have seen their stock prices fall over the past three months on growing concerns over a slowdown in the world's largest consumer of resources, China, which could impact their profitability.
Over the past three months, Rio's Australia-listed shares have tumbled 16.9 percent, while BHP's shares have fallen 11.2 percent.
Last week BHP Billiton's chairman Jacques Nasser said the company had called off previous plans to spend $80 billion until the end of 2015 on expansion projects, which was an example of fading optimism for growth in the commodity space over the next few years.
But Robinson still believes in the resources story and said the moderation in Chinese growth has been factored into growth expectations.
Over the first quarter of this year the Chinese economy grew at 8.1 percent, its weakest pace in nearly three years, raising doubts overChina's ability to support commodity prices.
According to Robinson if the U.S. economy grows at 2 percent in 2012, accompanied by "sustainable" growth from China, "that's a very good thing for Australian resource companies. Chinese mills will still need their resources."