The S&P 500 Index is up 2.6% so far in 2016 with utility stocks leading the way. Mark Hamilton, asset allocation chief investment officer at OppenheimerFunds, said investors should stick with stocks in the second half, although they may want to pull back on their exposures to higher-yielding sectors.
 
"With the Fed having tempered down some of their rhetoric and some early signs that we may see some better economic news over the second half of the year, I think that stocks are a fairly attractive place to be," said Hamilton.
 
OppenheimerFunds is moving to a near neutral position in equities in the firm's model asset allocation, reducing the underweight in U.S. and developed markets equities to about negative 6%.
 
OppenheimerFunds is also reducing its overweight in high yield credit from 8% to 3%. High yield has outperformed equity over the past few months and now Hamilton says it offers a less compelling relative value opportunity than before.
 
"The valuations have compressed its clearly no longer the most compelling part of the market, so we've begun to take down some of that high yield weight and move it back towards equities as the cyclical outlook has improved," said Hamilton.
 
Meanwhile, Hamilton is maintaining an overweight to emerging markets of nearly 5%, saying that they are finally showing signs of improvement.
 
"Given what we think are going to be tailwinds for many of the emerging markets given the depreciation that is going on in currencies there, that tends to portend better outcomes ahead," said Hamilton.
 
OppenheimerFunds is also reducing its duration posture from 0.5 years long to neutral.  Hamilton said Treasury yields are again near their lows for the year and thus offer less potential for risk mitigation and may suffer if growth accelerates.
 
"I think interest rates will remain fairly low over the course of the rest of the year," said Hamilton. "A lot of the things that are going on globally are driving low rates around the world and I don't see that environment changing significantly."

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