Archived material may contain dated performance, risk and other information. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance quoted in the archived material. For the most recent month-end fund performance information visit www.calamos.com. Archived material may contain dated opinions and estimates based on our judgment and are subject to change without notice, as are statements of financial market trends, which are based on current market conditions at the time of publishing. We believed the information provided here was reliable, but do not warrant its accuracy or completeness. This material is not intended as an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial instrument. The views and strategies described may not be suitable for all investors. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, accounting, legal or tax advice. References to future returns are not promises or even estimates of actual returns a client portfolio may achieve. Any forecasts contained herein are for illustrative purposes only and are not to be relied upon as advice or interpreted as a recommendation.

Performance data quoted represents past performance, which is no guarantee of future results. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance quoted. The principal value and return of an investment will fluctuate so that your shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost. Performance reflected at NAV does not include the Fund’s maximum front-end sales load. Had it been included, the Fund’s return would have been lower.

Archived on July 17, 2019

Green Shoots in China?

Nick Niziolek

Those who follow our posts know that we see considerable secular growth potential in China. This view was again affirmed during my most recent trip to Hong Kong last month, where members of our team had the opportunity to meet with management teams throughout Asia that are benefiting from secular growth trends as they navigate near-term cyclical pressures. The country’s geopolitical aspirations (including its bid to internationalize the renminbi), as well as its commitment to transition its economy from public sector and investment-led growth to private sector and consumption-led growth are likely to provide many opportunities for long-term investors.

In addition to this longer-term lens, we also consider risk/reward from short- and intermediate-term perspectives. In the third quarter, our focus on managing near-term volatility contributed to our decision to underweight China. However, as we enter the fourth quarter, we are starting to see some of signs of stabilization in economic data that is contributing to a more constructive near-term view on China.

First, China’s primary measure of manufacturing PMI activity was 49.8 for September. While still hovering below an expansionary level of 50, the reading showed signs of stabilizing and came in ahead of the consensus of 49.7, which we view as positive. Moreover, we were expecting muted manufacturing data in September, due to the massive manufacturing shutdown mandated by the government to ensure blue skies for China’s commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII. Our view has been that once the “Victory Blue” shutdown concluded, we would begin to see signs of recent stimulus working through to economic data. State-owned enterprises are likely to show the benefits of stimulus first, with a trickle down to small and medium enterprises in the coming months.

As we’ve noted in the past, China has many tools at its disposal to support its economy. In recent weeks, we’ve seen several fiscal policy moves that demonstrate the country’s commitment to avoid a hard landing while promoting the transition to a more consumption-driven economy. These include an auto tax cut and a reduction in requirements for property down payments. We’ve also seen a stabilization of the renminbi after a sharp depreciation, with additional capital controls being implemented to manage the flow of capital and reduce the volatility of this exchange rate. Over the medium-term, we should expect further depreciation of the renminbi relative to the dollar, as this currency adjusts to the weakness of other major trading currencies like the euro and yen, but the rate of this depreciation will be important as companies and governments adjust to this new environment.

To be clear, we still believe capital preservation remains paramount in the current environment. Nonetheless, we believe we are seeing encouraging signs that can improve investor perception about China by alleviating concerns about an imminent hard landing, while the correction we’ve seen in the equity markets seems to have more than discounted this risk. As a result, we are using this opportunity to gradually increase our exposure to China, both through equities that we believe have more than priced in this near-term risk and defensive convertibles that appear well positioned to participate in the eventual recovery of the Chinese equity markets.

Over the next weeks, there will be a great deal more data for us to evaluate, including foreign reserves data on October 6. Signs of stabilization in foreign reserves and savings deposits would point to a reduced risk of capital flight, which would give us more confidence in a gradual depreciation of the renminbi. We’ll also be watching for mid-month data on imports. As with many other data points coming out of China over the near term, we expect imports to be lower year-over-year, but here too we are looking for signs of stabilization in these next months.

If these green shoots begin to take hold and the markets can become comfortable that a hard landing is off the table for the near term, we wouldn’t rule out a fourth quarter rally in Chinese and global equity markets.

    Past performance is no guarantee of future results. The opinions referenced are as of the date of publication and are subject to change due to changes in the market or economic conditions and may not necessarily come to pass. Information contained herein is for informational purposes only and should not be considered investment advice.

    PMI, an abbreviation for Purchasing Managers Index, measures the strength of the manufacturing sector.

    As a result of political or economic instability in foreign countries, there can be special risks associated with investing in foreign securities, including fluctuations in currency exchange rates, increased price volatility and difficulty obtaining information. In addition, emerging markets may present additional risk due to potential for greater economic and political instability in less developed countries.

    Convertible securities entail interest rate risk and default risk.

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    Archived material may contain dated performance, risk and other information. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance quoted in the archived material. For the most recent month-end performance information, please CLICK HERE. Archived material may contain dated opinions and estimates based on our judgment and are subject to change without notice, as are statements of financial market trends, which are based on current market conditions at the time of publishing. We believed the information provided here was reliable, but do not warrant its accuracy or completeness. This material is not intended as an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial instrument. The views and strategies described may not be suitable for all investors. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, accounting, legal or tax advice. References to future returns are not promises or even estimates of actual returns a client portfolio may achieve. Any forecasts contained herein are for illustrative purposes only and are not to be relied upon as advice or interpreted as a recommendation.

    Performance data quoted represents past performance, which is no guarantee of future results. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance quoted. The principal value and return of an investment will fluctuate so that your shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost. Performance reflected at NAV does not include the Fund’s maximum front-end sales load. Had it been included, the Fund’s return would have been lower. For the most recent month-end fund performance information visit www.calamos.com.