Bloomberg - Evening Briefing - Optimistic outlook

Bloomberg Evening Briefing

Some of the world’s biggest investors predict that stocks will see low double-digit gains next year, which would bring relief after global equities suffered their worst loss since 2008. Amid recent optimism that inflation has peaked—and that the US Federal Reserve could start to change its tone—71% of respondents in a Bloomberg News survey expect equities to rise. For those seeing gains, the average response was a 10% return.

“Even though we might face a recession and falling profits, we have already discounted part of it in 2022,” said Pia Haak, chief investment officer at Swedbank Robur. “We will have better visibility coming into 2023 and this will hopefully help markets.” 

Here are today’s top stories

The other side of the coin? All that drumbeating that a recession is coming may be wearing down some of the optimists out there. Those who chose to ignore the inverted Treasury yield curve or see a wipeout of oil price gains as bad news seemed to grow distraught this week. They began trading as if the biggest threat to risk assets was now the heavily advertised downturn in growth. Right now, some on Wall Street consider rising unemployment a good thing, something to slow wage rises and thus inflation. But perhaps not for long, says Peter Tchir, head of macro strategy at Academy Securities. “We will shift from seeing ‘bad data’ as being ‘good’ to bad data being bad because it is a signal the economy is weakening faster and worse than most expected.”

Bank of America Chief Executive Officer Brian Moynihan said he has no intention to leave his post, responding to a report that he’s on the Biden administration’s short list to replace Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen if she steps down. “It’s not on my mind,” Moynihan told CNBC Friday. “I like what I do and that’s why I’m doing it today.” 

Brian Moynihan  Photographer: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg

Vladimir Putin is rattling his nuclear saber again, this time threatening to make a first strike an acceptable strategy for Russian forces. It was the second veiled atomic threat he made this week following a series of stunning Ukrainian drone attacks on bases deep in Russian territory. While earning the expected opprobrium from Washington, Putin’s latest bit of brinkmanship managed to anger an increasingly miffed ally. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has already dressed down Putin, won’t be holding an annual in-person summit with him. Ukraine meanwhile is likely to experience a power deficit throughout the winter as the nation remains without access to 40% of its pre-war generating capacity, thanks to Russian strikes. 

China’s abrupt reversal on “Covid zero” may trigger a tidal wave of infections in which the country suddenly catches up to the rest of the world in a very bad way. Little time has been spent putting in place the mitigation measures needed to deal with the resulting explosion in cases, which could total 5.6 million a day. The deaths that may result could top 2 million. Currently, more than 6.6 million people worldwide are confirmed to have died from the coronavirus over the past three years, though the actual number is thought to be much higher.

Kyrsten Sinema’s departure from the Democratic Party just days after it obtained some breathing room with Raphael Warnock’s Senate win may be more about the 2024 election than keeping her Washington leverage. Along with fellow moderate Joe Manchin of West Virginia, the Arizona senator has spent much of the past two years (with the help of Senate Republicans) blocking large parts of President Joe Biden’s legislative agenda. With her switch, that dynamic could continue.

Lennar, one of the biggest US homebuilders, is offering to sell thousands of homes to rental landlords at a time when sales to everyday buyers have slumped. Many of the properties are said to be located in the Southwest and Southeast, with the builder giving landlords the chance to acquire entire subdivisions

Indonesia’s new criminal code outlawing sex outside marriage and potentially curbing free speech will apply to citizens and foreigners in the country, spurring uncertainty among tourists and expatriates. The law could also deter foreign travel, which may undermine economic recovery in tourism-reliant places like Bali that are just rebounding from the first years of the pandemic.

An Indonesian man is caned publicly in Banda Aceh, Indonesia, in May 2017.  Photographer: Chaideer Mahyuddin/AFP

Bloomberg continues to track the global coronavirus pandemic. Click here for daily updates.

 What you’ll need to know tomorrow

The Best Gift Watches That Aren’t Rolexes 

Buying a watch as a gift is difficult in the best of times. What will suit your loved one’s tastes? Which are the best quality? Making everything more complicated is the fact that these days, there are long waiting lists for many of top timepieces. A wave of enthusiasm for haute horology has left many store shelves empty. Many favored models are absolutely impossible to get. Still, wonderful watches are available. Here are 17 of them.

From left: Bulgari Octo Finnissimo in titanium, H. Moser & Cie Pioneer Centre Seconds, Breitling Navitimer B01 Chronograph, Oris Divers Sixty-Five, Cartier Tank Must Solarbeat, and Frederique Constant Worldtimer. Source: Vendors; Background: Getty Images

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