‘Amazing’ Time to Buy Asian Stocks, Even as Selloff Continues
Asian stocks have lost most of their gains of the year and May will likely end as the worst month for equity markets in more than three years, but some strategists tell CNBC this is an "amazing" time to accumulate stocks.
"There's an incredible amount of noise. It's incredibly scary. We understand that but it is an amazing opportunity for investors to focus on their long-term requirements," Marc Desmidt, Managing Director of BlackRock's Asia Pacific Portfolio Management Group, said on CNBC Asia's "Squawk Box."
"This is an amazing time to look at equities across the world, dividend stocks that are going to generate an income for people who are going to be living a lot longer than they have in the past," he added.
Desmidt, whose team manages $300 billion of assets in Asia, said he is trying to advise clients to buy more equities, as well as other so-called risk assets.
"Safe havens are quite expensive and bonds give you a negative yield," Desmidt said. "Cash is going to burn a hole in your pocket over time, especially in Asia with inflation levels around 4 or 5 percent."
Stocks fell across Asia on Thursday after a selloff in Wall Street overnight amid worries that Europe's debt crisis could be worsening. The Nikkei 225 Stock Averagedropped close to 2 percent while in Hong Kong, the benchmark Hang Seng Indexwas down 1.4 percent in early trade. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index was down almost one percent.
Since the start of the month, the Hang Seng Index has plunged 12.3 percent while the Nikkei has declined nearly 8 percent.
While strategists are saying it's time to buy stocks, there are others who say it is time to stay on the sidelines. Dennis Gartman, investor and author of the newsletter, The Gartman Letter, is one of them, telling CNBC earlier this week that technical analysis suggest investors should be heading out of risk assets and that there is plenty of downside for equities.
Peter Schiff, CEO of Euro Pacific Capital, thinks the bottom for Asian stocks is yet to be hit, but suggests buying now.
"I like the Asian markets the best," Schiff told CNBC. "I'm not saying that the market is at a bottom but I think if you're a long-term investor, buy some stocks here and five years from now, you're going to be very glad you own them. And I think there are a lot of good dividends that you can get."
Mikio Kumada, Global Strategist at LGT Capital Management, said that risk assets are "oversold" and he sees value in equities. He sold some government bonds on May 22 and bought some stocks.
"I think in the short term risk assets are probably oversold. So we might get a good bounce here," he said.
—By CNBC’s Jean Chua.