Interest rates are surging in the U.S. and internationally, sending a wave of volatility into the equity market. Here's what three market experts said about how investors can position themselves around rising rates.
- Art Cashin, UBS director of floor operations at the New York Stock Exchange, said, "The market's convinced the Fed's going again in December, but I think they would be well-served if they would get across the fact that they're still watch-and-see: If the economy remains strong, we'll consider it again; we do not have a definite plan at this moment. … Divergences raise concerns. It's not an outright signal to sell everything and run for the hills, but it's: Be cautious, yes, you're making record highs, but you're not doing it with the broad support you usually have."
- Mark Grant, chief strategist at B. Riley FBR, said the Federal Reserve's tightening path is going to have a "major negative impact on businesses and on the economy." He also said that he's advising clients that the "equity markets are going to be tricky. Interest rates are likely to go higher now, and it's going to be a more difficult environment to invest in than it has been."
- Jim Paulsen, chief investment strategist at the Leuthold Group, said rising interest rates are hitting the markets but fears of slowing growth are also taking a toll on equities. "I think it has more to do with nervousness about growth. If you put that together with a 10 percent drop in industrial commodity prices since June and weak housing, weak autos, weak durable goods spending … if we drop growth right now and remove those fantastic fundamentals, and we leave a higher rate structure in place, that's where the pressure would really intensify on stocks," he said.
Bottom line: Investors would be prudent to expect higher interest rates and continued volatility in the U.S. equity market.