Why the ASX is trading like a recession is coming (and the NASDAQ isn't)

Mon 03 Jul 23, 2:00pm (AEST)
Livewire Markets


  • Signal or Noise is back with its latest multi-asset episode.
  • This month, the focus is on the disconnect between economic data and market valuations.
  • Joining Hans and Diana are Simon Doyle of Schroders and Mark Gardner of MPC Markets.

On 3 May 2022, the Reserve Bank of Australia hiked the cash rate target by 25 basis points, to 0.35%. In the last paragraph of that day's decision statement, the Board wrote the following:

The Board is committed to doing what is necessary to ensure that inflation in Australia returns to target over time. This will require a further lift in interest rates over the period ahead.

Since then, the RBA has hiked that rate by 400 basis points (4%) and still isn't ruling more out, even if it creates a much larger risk of recession. 

Equity market investors have worked this out and it shows in the price action. The ASX 200 has effectively completed a round-trip, with the index roughly back at May 2022 levels (7200). Even the P/E ratio and ASX earnings yield have barely shifted an iota in the past 13 months! Until very recently, this was also the case in the bond market with the 10-year yield hovering in the mid-3% range. 

It's a far, far different story in the US, with the NASDAQ up 37% in the last year and the Barclays AI basket up nearly 50% in that same time period.

So how did we get here, why are we here, and more importantly what happens now?

Those three questions are just some of the pressing issues we are tackling in this month's edition of Livewire's Signal or Noise. Moderator Hans Lee returns alongside regular panelist Diana Mousina, deputy chief economist of AMP. They are also joined by two market veterans who have more than 50 years of experience between them.

This episode was taped on Wednesday 28 June, 2023.

Created By

Signal or Noise

Mon 03 Jul 23, 2:00pm (AEST)

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