Bank of America put out a very refreshing outlook today, reminding investors of an asset that has traditionally thrived in times of high inflation. And no, it isn’t gold or other commodities. That asset is…small caps. (BA)ML says that small caps, and value stocks as well, have traditionally performed well in high inflation environments, such as in the 1960s. According to the firm, “Our US Regime Indicator has shifted to Mid-Cycle, a phase where inflation is typically strongest. In this phase, small caps and Value have typically outperformed large caps and Growth – further supported by the profits recovery and economic rebound we expect this year. Small caps and Value stocks were also some of the best-performing assets during the inflationary period of the late 60s”.
FINSUM: History aside, we cannot really agree about the idea that small caps will thrive. Relative to large caps, small caps have a higher employment cost base because their employees are more often in the US. Their supply chains are more domestic too. That means all their costs will rise alongside their revenue. Take a larger multinational—Apple for example—most of its manufacturing and supply chain costs are offshore, which means it can enjoy rising inflation-driven revenue, but take advantage of lower inflation rates in its cost base.
- small caps
- Bank of America
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