Can the FTSE 100 continue its good run?
Many would say that making predictions is a guaranteed way of getting egg on your face. There's a lot of truth in that, but I still think making predictions is actually a lot of fun if, crucially, you don't take yourself too seriously.
In October of last year I wrote an article entitled 'Does The Bull Market Start Here?' I boldly predicted that "we are in the early stages of a bull market". I felt that this might finally be the time the FTSE 100 makes its move through 6,000, because "even Groundhog Day doesn't last forever".
It is darkest before the dawn
At the time I was told there was "no chance of a bull market", that "the charts are definitely not telling me a bull market is on its way". I met as much pessimism as I ever have for the prospects for the stock market. But, as they say, it is darkest before the dawn.
Fast forward to today: we have had the best start to a year in decades. The FTSE 100 has decisively burst through 6,000. High-yielders such as Aviva, RSA Insurance Group and Barclays have been leading the charge.
So what now? Well, we have had a good start to the year, but no market can keep increasing forever. I think, for the moment, the market will have a breather.
The Great Rotation
There has been much talk of 'The Great Rotation', from bonds out to equities. Will it happen? If so, when? Well, in my view, the Great Rotation is happening right now. But I see this as a gradual move, rather than an overnight transformation. There will be no 'tipping point' of people coming out from bonds to shares, but rather a steady change.
Such a transition will be the engine that drives stock market growth over the years ahead. During this time, our preconceptions of what shares are cheap and what are expensive will be transformed.
So, overall, I was bullish in October 2012, and I am still bullish now. But this does not mean that share prices will instantly rocket -- there will be ups and there will be downs, as always, but year on year, I expect to see share prices move upwards. World stock markets now promise much and I, for one, am ready for the ride.
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> Prabhat owns shares in Aviva, RSA Insurance Group and Barclays.