With the threat of European debt contagion wafting through the air, investors are heading for cover, taking their most conservative positions since the depths of the financial crisis.
Cash now makes up an average 5.3 percent of portfolios, the most since January 2009, according to the closely watched Bank of America Merrill Lynch Survey of Fund Managers for June.
Curiously, investors on some levels are more suspect not of prospects in Europe but in the U.S., where expectations for growth fell 25 percent, compared to 5 percent for the troubled euro zone , where debt problems in Greece, Spain, and elsewhere are stoking fears of a widespread recession .
As such, the clamor for central bank intervention is rising. A majority of respondents — by a 6 percent difference — believe that global monetary policy is "too restrictive" and in need of change.
"Hopes expressed last month of a policy response have now become expectations," Michael Hartnett, chief global equity strategist at BofAML, said in a statement. "Markets are keenly anticipating decisive action from key policy meetings in June."
Many economists, though, believe that the Federal Reserve likely is still a few months away from more quantitative easing .Page 1 of 4 | Next Page