Skip to Main Content

What’s in Store for 2024? Our Holiday Reading List Has You Covered

From soaring interest rates to near-record inflation and growing geopolitical instability, 2023 tested investors’ mettle. Will next year be a rerun, or can markets expect something else? Read on for a round up of some year-end takes, and how BMO can help keep clients positioned for success in 2024.

December 2023

Photo of Sam DiTella

Sam DiTella

Managing Director, Head of Intermediary and National Accounts

Read bio

It’s that time of year again: outlook season.

Market strategists and prognosticators of all stripes are busy putting out annual takes on what investors can expect over the next 12 months. We’ve taken the liberty to round up some of the pieces and articles we’ve been reading to help inform our view and provide some context, using as our guide BMO Global Asset Management’s own 10 Big Investment Trends for 2024 by Fred Demers, Director of Multi-Asset Solutions.

You can find Fred’s complete breakdown in the special December issue of the BMO GAM House View Report. You can also find Fred’s Fund Central visual explainer here: 10 Big Investment Trends for 2024

Let’s now roll through those 10 themes, with some helpful links to accompany them:

(Note: For articles behind a paywall, please follow up with your BMO Global Asset Management wholesaler for a complimentary link if you cannot access.)

1. Recession – For many investors, recession is the most significant macroeconomic question. BMO GAM still sees a mild downturn as the most likely scenario—and in fact, Canada may already be in a technical recession. Yet many are suggesting the U.S. may avoid a downturn altogether.

Applicable Funds:

2. Inflation – Are rising prices transitory after all? Inflation fears dominated 2023. The good news is, rising prices have largely normalized. Our expectation is that slowing economic growth should reinforce low and stable inflation into 2025—a tailwind for equities and bonds.

Applicable Funds

3. Fiscal PolicyWill interest rates revive fiscal hawks? Higher-for-longer interest rates do not mix well with soaring public debt. In the U.S., net interest outlays for 2023 surged past $1 trillion and are continuing to rise, with a similar story in Canada.

Applicable Funds:

4. Monetary PolicyHigher-for-longer will be tested. Fixed income markets see higher-for-longer as the most likely interest rate scenario, but we think even a soft landing could mean much lower rates.

Applicable Funds:

5. Corporate LeverageWatch for the rise of the zombies. High interest rates mean big problems for European equities and U.S. small caps. In contrast, U.S. Technology firms (like those listed on the Nasdaq) and U.K. and Japanese equities, are less exposed to rates. The timing and magnitude of cuts in 2024 could be an important driver of relative performance across regions and sectors.

Applicable Funds:

6. Geopolitics – Deglobalization, or regionalization? Don’t confuse the deglobalization trend with regional, “friendly” shifts in global trade. So-called ‘nearshoring’ or ‘friend-shoring’ means opportunities for countries aligned with the U.S., like Canada.

Applicable Funds:

7. U.S. Politics – Re-election tailwind for stocks? Here’s a compelling statistic: since 1952, the S&P 500 has not declined in a year in which an incumbent president was running for re-election. Why? Presidents tend to use whatever policy levers are needed to boost the economy.

Applicable Funds:

8. Artificial Intelligence – Join the revolution. Technology companies, including the Magnificent Seven, are finding new ways to expand their already-dominant businesses. That could continue in 2024.

Applicable Funds:

9. Alternatives – The quest for diversification. Individual investors increasingly seek to invest like larger institutions, gaining exposure to non-traditional asset classes. It’s a trend we see continuing.

Applicable Funds:

10. Rebooting the 60-40: Time to embrace higher interest rates. Bond yields at levels not seen since before the Global Financial Crisis of 2007-2008 have helped to rejuvenate the conventional 60% stocks/40% bonds portfolio, another trend we see lasting through the new year.

Applicable Funds:


For more information on the funds referenced above or additional investing strategies, please contact your BMO Global Asset Management wholesaler.


1 For accredited Canadian investors only.

Commissions, management fees and expenses (if applicable) all may be associated with investments in mutual funds. Trailing commissions may be associated with investments in certain series of securities of mutual funds. Please read the fund facts, ETF facts or prospectus of the relevant mutual fund before investing. Mutual funds are not guaranteed, their values change frequently and past performance may not be repeated. Distributions are not guaranteed and are subject to change and/or elimination.

For a summary of the risks of an investment in the BMO Mutual Funds, please see the specific risks set out in the prospectus. ETF Series of the BMO Mutual Funds trade like stocks, fluctuate in market value and may trade at a discount to their net asset value, which may increase the risk of loss. Distributions are not guaranteed and are subject to change and/or elimination.

BMO Mutual Funds are managed by BMO Investments Inc., which is an investment fund manager and a separate legal entity from Bank of Montreal.

Any statement that necessarily depends on future events may be a forward-looking statement. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of performance. They involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions. Although such statements are based on assumptions that are believed to be reasonable, there can be no assurance that actual results will not differ materially from expectations. Investors are cautioned not to rely unduly on any forward-looking statements. In connection with any forward-looking statements, investors should carefully consider the areas of risk described in the most recent simplified prospectus.


This article is for information purposes. The information contained herein is not, and should not be construed as, investment, tax or legal advice to any party. Investments should be evaluated relative to the individual’s investment objectives and professional advice should be obtained with respect to any circumstance.

BMO Global Asset Management is a brand name under which BMO Asset Management Inc. and BMO Investments Inc. operate.

®/™Registered trademarks/trademark of Bank of Montreal, used under licence.

* As compared to an investment that generates an equivalent amount of interest income.

®/™Registered trademarks/trademark of Bank of Montreal, used under licence.

BMO Global Asset Management is a brand name under which BMO Asset Management Inc. and BMO Investments Inc. operate. Certain of the products and services offered under the brand name, BMO Global Asset Management are designed specifically for various categories of investors in a number of different countries and regions and may not be available to all investors. Products and services are only offered to such investors in those countries and regions in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. BMO Financial Group is a service mark of Bank of Montreal (BMO).

BMO ETFs are managed and administered by BMO Asset Management Inc., an investment fund manager and portfolio manager and separate legal entity from Bank of Montreal. Commissions, management fees and expenses all may be associated with investments in exchange traded funds. Please read the prospectus before investing.

Exchange traded funds are not guaranteed, their values change frequently and past performance may not be repeated.

BMO Mutual Funds are managed by BMO Investments Inc., which is an investment fund manager and a separate legal entity from Bank of Montreal.

Commissions, trailing commissions (if applicable), management fees and expenses all may be associated with mutual fund investments. Please read the ETF facts, fund facts or prospectus of the relevant mutual fund before investing. Mutual funds are not guaranteed, their values change frequently and past performance may not be repeated.

For a summary of the risks of an investment in the BMO Mutual Funds, please see the specific risks set out in the prospectus. ETF Series of the BMO Mutual Funds trade like stocks, fluctuate in market value and may trade at a discount to their net asset value, which may increase the risk of loss. Distributions are not guaranteed and are subject to change and/or elimination.

BMO Life Assurance Company is the issuer of the BMO Segregated Funds individual variable insurance contract referred to in the Information Folder and the guarantor of any guarantee provisions therein. The BMO GIF Information Folder and Policy Provisions provide full details and govern in all cases. BMO GIF products are offered through BMO Life Assurance, a separate legal entity than BMO Global Asset Management and wholly owned by BMO Financial Group. Segregated funds are only available for sale by individuals with appropriate insurance licences and are not considered a mutual fund. Segregated fund fees are higher than mutual funds as they include insurance fees to provide for the guarantees on deposits at maturity or on death.

Legal and regulatory disclosures

This information is for Investment Advisors only. By accepting, you certify that you are an Investment Advisor. If you are NOT an Investment Advisor, please decline and view the content in the Investor or Institutional areas of the site. The website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to provide a complete description of BMO Global Asset Management’s products or services. Past performance is not indicative of future results. It should not be construed as investment advice or relied upon in making an investment decision. Products and services of BMO Global Asset Management are only offered in jurisdictions where they may be lawfully offered for sale. The information contained in this Website does not constitute an offer or solicitation by anyone to buy or sell any investment fund or other product, service or information to anyone in any jurisdiction in which an offer or solicitation is not authorized or cannot be legally made or to any person to whom it is unlawful to make an offer of solicitation. All products and services are subject to the terms of each and every applicable agreement. It is important to note that not all products, services and information are available in all jurisdictions outside Canada.