Investors are still too gloomy about UK stocks

Investors are gloomy about the prospect of a Brexit deal, but that means that the worst scenarios are already in the price, Jason Hollands of wealth manager Tilney tells The Times. UK investors have deserted their own stockmarket en masse since June 2016, with £11.47bn of net inflows into global equity funds, says Hugo Cox in the same paper. That has significantly increased their exposure to America and the dollar in particular.

Meanwhile, it’s interesting to note that for all the Brexit fuss, the MSCI United Kingdom All Cap index has “been the least volatile of any stockmarket index in the world since 2016”, says Harry Brennan in The Daily Telegraph. The strong presence of multinationals such as Unilever on the London market has shielded investors. These firms make over 70% of their sales overseas and their international perspective eclipses domestic turbulence.

British investors, then, should take another look at their home market. Shares are cheap enough to produce healthy long-term returns, whatever the near-term turbulence. With a juicy dividend yield of 5% the FTSE 100 is one of the most attractive markets in the world for income-seekers.

British stocks are also on a cyclically adjusted price/earnings ratio (Cape) of 16, cheaper than Europe and a bargain compared with America. As we noted in a cover story earlier this month, Cape is a good indicator of long-term returns.