Egypt was lifted, in a recent report, to neutral at Citigroup Inc.
Emerging-market stocks will rally 20 percent to 25 percent by the end of this year as the world economy avoids a double-dip recession and attractive valuations lure investors, according to Citigroup Inc.
Most of the rally will come in the fourth quarter as shares stay in a “trading range” during the historically weak months of August and September, New York-based strategist Geoffrey Dennis wrote in a report.
Developing nations will lead the global economic recovery with growth of 6.8 percent this year and 6 percent in 2011, Dennis wrote.
“Fears of a ‘double-dip’ are overdone,” Dennis wrote. Emerging markets “should remain the strongest part of the global recovery story,” he wrote.
The MSCI Emerging Markets Index has rallied 4 percent this week, heading for the best one-week gain in four months. The 21- country index is still down 9.3 percent from this year’s peak, on concern China’s steps to curb inflation and spending cuts by governments worldwide will jeopardize economic expansion. Emerging-market shares trade for 10.8 times estimated earnings, a nine percent discount to the long-term average, Dennis wrote.
The strategist upgraded his rating of the Europe, Middle East and Africa region to “neutral” on better earnings momentum and low stock valuations. He downgraded Latin America to “underweight” on weaker earnings growth and rising interest rates. Asia remains “overweight,” the note said.
Thailand was upgrade to “overweight” and South Africa, Poland and Malaysia were lifted to “neutral.” Citigroup downgraded Brazil to “neutral” and India from to “underweight.”
Russia, Turkey, Korea, Taiwan and Thailand are the top country picks, Dennis wrote. His favorite industries are raw- material producers, technology and industrial companies.