A global stock slump may have further to go, according to Tobin’s Q ratio, which compares the market value of companies to the cost of their constituent parts, CLSA Ltd. strategist Russell Napier said.
The ratio, developed in 1969 by Nobel Prize-winning economist James Tobin, indicates the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index is still too expensive relative to the cost of replacing assets, said Napier. While the 39 percent drop in the S&P this year pushed equity prices below replacement cost, history suggests the ratio must sink further as deflation sets in, he said. The S&P may plunge another 55 percent to a trough of 400 by 2014, the strategist said.
“Things have always looked absolutely terrible at the bottom,” said Napier, Institutional Investor’s top-ranked Asia strategist from 1997-1999. With deflation “the value of assets falls and the value of debt stays up, then equity gets crushed. The results are always horrific.”
Shares have fallen this year as the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression caused almost $1 trillion of losses at institutions around the globe and dragged the world’s largest economies into recession. The MSCI World Index has tumbled 44 percent in 2008, set for the biggest annual decline in its four- decade history.
Napier, who teaches at Edinburgh Business School, based his S&P 500 forecast on the Q for U.S. equities as well as the 10- year cyclically adjusted price-to-earnings ratio, another measure of long-term value.
Before the trough in 2014, investors are likely to see a so-called bear market rally for the next two years as central bank actions delay the onset of deflation, he said....MORE
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Q Ratio Signals ‘Horrific’ Market Bottom, CLSA Says
Years ago I had an assistant who asked, very politely "would you rather be aware of the information or not?". That was a very smart question. Here's Bloomberg: