Why It Really Is All About China
There are two approaches to being a sell-side, talking-head, strategist when it comes to China. If China is rising, then hey, global growth is recovering and China's transition is going well - so buy US equities levered to China. If, however, China is falling (or out of favor) then US equity markets are the cleanest dirty shirt and decoupling is the new normal. Thus, no matter what, being long US equities is your staple investment advice - heck it's worked for a few decades, why not? Well the truth is that, empirically, the correlation between US Machinery or Tech Hardware stocks and the Chinese market has risen for six years straight. In other words, there is no decoupling (ever); as goes China, so goes US equities - and that sensitivity has never been higher.
The correlation of US Machinery or US Tech Hardware stock returns to those of the Shanghai Composite have risen almost non-stop for the past six years... recent Machinery (cough CAT cough) has become almost entirely synced with the transitioning nation...
Chart: Morgan Stanley