The Top 5 Investment Trends for Mid-2011

Investment experts agree: the stock market is in a summer lull. But this doesn’t mean your investments have to stagnate or suffer.

On the contrary, this summer pause presents a great opportunity to appraise the performance of your 2011 investment portfolio to date and strategize where you might want to go from here.

Regardless of whether you consider yourself a big or small investor – or somewhere in between — a smart starting point is to evaluate your portfolio’s history thus far. How does it compare to the international and domestic (U.S.) investing trends forecast for the remainder of the year?  Do you need to make an adjustment?  Do you have the right mix of stocks, bonds, mutual funds, or ETFs? If not, you may well want to make your move now.

Top 5 Global Investing Trends

According to Arbor Investment Planners, Inc., the top five projected global investing trends for the latter half of 2011 are:

  • Energy
  • Health & Environment
  • Food & Nutrition
  • Infrastructure & Commodities
  • Defense

Even a casual observer would note that these five global investing trends can only continue to climb upward in terms of worldwide demand.

Top 5 Domestic Investing Trends

For domestic (U.S.) investments, the main factors to assess are energy, housing, interest rates, employment, and manufacturing. These trends comprise the very heartbeat of the overall U.S. economy.

Citing the latest statistics from Goldman-Sachs, Calculated Risk reports five domestic investing trends for the last two quarters of 2011:

  • Energy
  • Housing
  • Interest Rates
  • Vehicle production
  • Employment

So What Does This Mean for You?

Of course, reputable investment experts are unanimous in their counsel to take a long-term view of trends, and wait out those short-term spasms – and lulls — of the stock market.

That said, a smart investment strategy for the remainder of 2011 (and beyond) will consider these big-picture, long-term trends and forecasts:

Global Forecasts:

  • Commodities should continue to prove a smart long-term investment, as Asian countries are dedicated to building massive infrastructure projects for the next ten to fifteen years.
  • Asian economies have been successfully checked with higher interest rates to slow unsustainable growth, so their stock markets should take off in the coming months.

U.S. Forecasts:

  • While the U.S. economic recovery has not been particularly robust, it is still growing and should not revisit double-digital recession rates.
  • Quantitative easing by the U.S. Federal Reserve has many analysts hopeful that the U.S. market will fare well in the latter half of 2011.
  • After the recent spike, retail gasoline prices are now back to end-2010 levels (and there are reports of some promising statistics for alternative energy investors).
  • The most recent data indicate that the decline in housing may be abating.
  • While bank lending standards remain tight (and in spite of the recent increase in interest rates) financial conditions are relatively easier overall compared to any point in 2010.
  • Automobile manufacturing has rebounded, as it recovers from Japan’s earthquake and tsunami.
  • Most recent numbers show the unemployment rate is easing back to 9.9-percent.

So it appears that both the international and domestic stock markets are projected to be bullish. This summer siesta presents a fantastic opportunity to revisit and revise your stock investments to take advantage of the positive trends forecast for the rest of 2011.

Of course, it is always a good idea to consult with your financial advisor or trusted online resource before making any substantive decisions about your investments. As chameleon as the market can be, you want to be sure you’ve the latest and most accurate information.