Move out of ASX shares into overseas stocks NOW: expert

Australia could suffer a ‘lost decade’ of low growth, says Nucleus Wealth strategist David Llewellyn-Smith. You’ve been warned.

A businessman on a rowing boat marooned on parched land, indicating rocky share price movements on the ASX and better options offshore

Image source: Getty Images

Investors need to pull out of Australian shares and shift their focus onto overseas opportunities.

That’s the advice from Nucleus Wealth chief strategist David Llewellyn-Smith, who said the global recovery out of COVID-19 is completely different from the global financial crisis and the dot-com bust.

“Those two crashes were led by the US and the recoveries led by China. This time around, the crisis was led by China and the recovery will be led by the US.”

The distinction is very important to investment returns in the coming cycle, according to Llewellyn-Smith.

“Moreover, these cyclical forces will further be buffeted by epochal shifts in structural forces shaping the global economy which have, if anything, changed even more dramatically in the past few years,” he said on a Nucleus blog post.

“What this means is that now is the time for investors to abandon Australia for global assets.”

Australia could have another ‘lost decade’

Llewellyn-Smith reckons punters need to stop worrying about the Reserve Bank increasing interest rates.

“Forget rate hikes, the RBA is more likely to have to cut,” he said.

“The major reason is China. Its accelerated cyclical slowing is focused upon steel-intensive growth. Iron ore prices will fall a long way as demand fades while supply returns… Normalisation and new supply from every corner of the earth will arrive, owing to the extreme price signal today.”

Falling commodity prices will have a domino effect on the Australian economy and its share markets.

“As iron ore tumbles, house prices stall, and the immigration drivers of growth in the last cycle fail to rematerialise, the Australian dollar will fall a long way,” said Llewellyn-Smith.

“If the RBA cuts, we could head into a circumstance akin to the late 1990s when Australian yields lagged the US by so far that the AUD fell below 50 cents.”

The strategist then fears that the country will have another “lost decade”.

“And it won’t end until the AUD falls much further and stays down for years to trigger a rebuild in long-forgotten tradable sectors.”

Flee Down Under for better growth

Aside from shares relating to renewable energy, the outlook is bleak for local companies.

“Once we get past the policy supports of the pandemic, most Australian assets have little growth underpinning to drive them forward,” said Llewellyn-Smith.

“Only bonds appear to have value because global markets have not yet differentiated our yields to match this gloomy outlook.”

But the growth forecast for some other developed nations is “very good in the short and medium-term”. 

“[Those nations will be] led by a revitalised progressive American liberalism with years ahead of exceptional growth,” Llewellyn-Smith said.

“The conclusion for investors is that offshore assets beckon with better returns and greater structural tailwinds. Further, the risks are also lower. Intermittent crises invariably result in a falling AUD, which cushions the downside from falling stock markets.”

Wondering where you should invest $1,000 right now?

When investing expert Scott Phillips has a stock tip, it can pay to listen. After all, the flagship Motley Fool Share Advisor newsletter he has run for more than eight years has provided thousands of paying members with stock picks that have doubled, tripled or even more.*

Scott just revealed what he believes could be the five best ASX stocks for investors to buy right now. These stocks are trading at near dirt-cheap prices and Scott thinks they could be great buys right now.

*Returns as of August 16th 2021

Motley Fool contributor Tony Yoo has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

More on Economy