US retail investors are sitting out latest stocks rally

New York, Dec 7 (IANS): The S&P 500 index in November notched its best monthly performance this year, snapping a three-month streak of steep losses as Wall Street became optimistic that the Federal Reserve is done raising interest rates, the media reported.

The revival in stocks, though off to a bumpy start in December, has been broad in reach, pulling up shares of everything from small caps to cyclical stocks, CNN reported.

Among the chief catalysts for the rally are swooning US Treasury yields.

The yield on the 10-year US Treasury note fell to 4.12 per cent on Wednesday, well below the 5 per cent it topped in late October, according to Tradeweb, CNN reported.

The glut of cash on the sidelines is "poised to fuel a significant rally in risk assets, offering investors an opportunity to potentially capitalize on improved sentiment and market dynamics", wrote Seema Shah, chief global strategist at Principal Asset Management, in a note on Monday.

But analysts say that retail traders are not jumping into the stock market and might not anytime soon. Cash is still king for many, CNN reported.

The TD Ameritrade Investor Movement index for November, a measure of retail investor sentiment, revealed that the company's clients were net sellers of stocks last month despite the market's recovery.

The index also recorded its lowest monthly reading since May, CNN reported.

"A lot of retail investors are just happy to not participate right now," said Brian Mulberry, client portfolio manager at Zacks Investment Management.

There is a record $5.84 trillion parked in money market funds as of November 29, according to Investment Company Institute data.

About $2.25 trillion of that cash is in retail money market funds, CNN reported.

While institutional investors are starting to pick at stocks poised to do well if the economy reaccelerates -- explaining the rally's widening breadth -- retail traders are taking a more conservative approach, especially after seeing steep declines in their portfolios during last year's sell-off, says Mulberry, CNN reported.



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