By Barbara Kollmeyer, MarketWatch
A previous version of this story misstated the year in which strategist Andrew Milligan expects 5G-related assets to achieve popularity among investors. The story has been corrected.
The short holiday week begins with stocks hovering at all-time highs.
We’ll see if that turns into a good omen for the year to come but, for now, stocks are perking up, thanks to some positive chatter on the U.S.-China trade front. Note, trading volumes will likely start to thin out as investors begin their holiday vacations.
Onto our call of the day , from Standard Life Investments’s head of global strategy, Andrew Milligan, who earlier in the year gave this column two winning technology stock picks for 2019 — Microsoft /zigman2/quotes/207732364/composite MSFT +1.48% and Equinix /zigman2/quotes/208927761/composite EQIX -0.44% /zigman2/quotes/208927761/composite EQIX -0.44% —up 55% and 64%, respectively, year-to-date.
We’ve gone back to Milligan to get more equity ideas for the year ahead, and he tells us he still likes Microsoft. What else? Credit card providers Visa /zigman2/quotes/203660239/composite V +0.17% and Mastercard /zigman2/quotes/207581792/composite MA +0.45% , the former “a little more developed-market orientated and the latter a little more emerging-market orientated,” he says.
Milligan believes that 2020 will be the year investors decide it is time to buy some 5G assets — the next-generation wireless technology that is set to roll out in 2020. “In the world of 5G, semi and smartphones, then Marvell is worth examining,” he said. Chip maker Marvell Technology /zigman2/quotes/200053236/composite MRVL +0.76% is among the companies with a foothold in that related 5G technology.
In the smaller-cap space, albeit riskier, says Milligan, he likes Five9 /zigman2/quotes/209043265/composite FIVN +0.73% , which operates in the cloud software area.
As for this history-setting bull market, this strategist says it could carry on in the year ahead, but like others, he believes it needs to be fueled by stronger company profits. Still, there are other things to cheer, such as a trade truce between the U.S. and China, and central banks pulling back on the urge to tighten up policy, he says.
Dow /zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime DJIA +1.20% , S&P /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX +0.83% and Nasdaq /zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime COMP +0.74% are rising, while European stocks /zigman2/quotes/210599654/delayed XX:SXXP -0.11% are mixed and Asian markets /zigman2/quotes/211618636/realtime XX:ADOW -0.78% were flat.
Our chart comes from CNN’s Fear & Greed Index, a gauge of investor emotions that has been hovering lately in the Extreme Greed region — a far cry from the Extreme Fear range of a year ago. And a month ago it showed investors as just plain greedy.