Fortune Magazine spoke to eight eminent experts and took their view of the coming year. The article makes interesting reading, and here are some highlights:
1. Nouriel Roubini: According to the NYU Economics professor – also known as – Dr. Doom, this year is the year to stay in cash. Mr. Roubini advises to stay away from stocks, commodities, and credit in general. He advises to stay in cash or cash like instruments.
2. Bill Gross: Mr. Gross also predicts a grim 2009, and, advises to stay invested in high quality corporate bonds and preferred stock of financial institutions that have partnered with the government in programs like TARP.
3. Robert Shiller: So far Mr. Shiller has called the housing, as well as the dot com bubble, and, he is slightly more optimistic than the others. He says that – if you have an appetite for risk – you can invest in the markets because they are so low. But there is a good chance, that your investements may be halved too.
4. Sheila Bair: Ms. Bair talks about her mother, who is a long term investor – who bought stocks that she understood , and then held on to them for a long while. She did not say anything specifically about the next year.
5. Jim Rogers: Mr. Roger’s favorite has beenÂ – agricultural commodities; for some time now, and, he has been talking about it quite often. He also recommends Chinese and Taiwanese stocks. His advise is to look for things whose fundamentals are not impaired.
6. John Train: Mr. Train is the first person on this list to advocate equities. He says that stocks are priced for a depression; when we may only see a recession. He says that companies like Johnson and Johnson are well equipped to deal with the current situation. Other companies that he mentions are Cisco, Apple, Microsoft, Berkshire Hathaway, Hewlett-Packard, Google, Intel, and IBM.
7. Meredith Whitney: Ms. Whitney rose to fame when she first predicted the dire straits that Citi would get into. She has a pessimistic outlook on 2009, and, thinks that things are going to get worse in 2009 in terms of consumer spending and the economy in general.
8. Wilbur Ross: Mr. Ross is the only one in the list who has started investing in the distressed financial firms – and hopes that they will make a comeback soon.
While the mood of most in this list is sombre – the investment tactic differ quite significantly. That is a measure of how complex decision making has become in these bleak times.