THE handbag paulista is heading to close another month with appreciation, still reflecting the strong flow of individuals to Brazilian stocks, which have been increasing their share in the volume traded since March, despite all the volatility that the pandemic brought to the markets financial resources.
The index is still far from the highs at the beginning of the year, when it approached 120 thousand points, but it has already moved away from the 2020 low, when it regressed to almost 60 thousand points in March, which was severely affected by the wave of global risk aversion triggered by the Covid-19.
During this period, B3 only saw the participation of individual investors grow, in absolute terms and in the total traded on the floor.
It is a phenomenon quite different from what happened in other crises that caused this class of investor to escape from economy its main catalyst.
The movement in equity funds endorses this effect of the Selic. In March, there was net funding of 8.3 billion reais in these investments, while the fund industry as a whole had a net redemption of 31.2 billion reais, with the balance in equity funds remaining positive in the following months, although lower, according to Anbima.
It is not new that this participation of investors has been growing on the stock exchange in recent years. But in March, when the Ibovespa fell by almost 30%, B3 recorded a record jump of 298,871 new active investors compared to February when there was an increase of 120,358 compared to January.
April and May, although at a slower pace, continued to show expansion in this base, which already exceeds 2.5 million active investors, more than double the figure registered a year earlier (1.1 million).
And June continues to show the same trend, which is also observed in the percentage of traded volume.
Until the last 23rd, individuals accounted for 23.8% of the total traded in June, with a positive balance of purchases and sales of 2.5 billion reais.
In the fateful month of March, in which participation rose to 16.2%, there was a net inflow of 17.5 billion reais.
“What we saw in March, in April… This was a phenomenon,” said Gabriel Leal, partner and head of the commercial and customer relations area at XP Inc. (XP), which ended May with 2.2 million active customers.
The drop in the Ibovespa from almost 120 thousand points to around 60 thousand points, he added, generated a great rush because individuals saw an opportunity to buy the cheapest stock exchange. “And that ended up being a big trigger for the exponential increase in investors,” noted Leal.
He further stated that he would not be surprised by 10 million individuals on the stock exchange in two years. “We even work internally with numbers of this magnitude.”
The day before, Leal was responsible for new shots in the recent fight between XP and Itaú Unibanco (ITUB4), one of the effects of the “phenomenon” of the increase in the participation of individuals in the stock market.
He stated that the partner’s Personnalité platform will disappear in 3 years due to the migration of customer resources to XP.
And while XP and Itaú exchange barbs in public, the BTG bank runs outside, estimating to price on the next 29th billion dollar offer of units, which foresees the allocation of resources in the growth of its digital retail platform, focused on individuals.
The Credit Suisse signed an agreement with the Bank Modal to acquire up to 35% of the participation of the modalmais digital bank, in order to explore synergies between its investment products and services.
The experts consulted expect that the growth in the presence of individual investors on the stock exchange is here to stay, supported by the fall in the Selic rate to 2.25%.
“This ends up serving as a stimulus for people to look for better ways to make their money pay,” said Marcelo Flora, partner at the Bank BTG Pactual responsible for BTG Pactual digital.
The executive says that, in the long term, reforms will be necessary to create conditions to keep this level of interest low, but that, at this moment, the coronavirus pandemic itself and its restrictive effects on the economy end up corroborating this scenario of reduced rates.
In addition, Rodrigo Puga, partner at modalmais digital bank, notes that there are still a series of factors that can bring volatility, such as the political and reform scenario still troubled in the country, elections in USA and the risk of a second wave of Covid-19 infections, but that trend of expanding the share of individuals in the stock market should continue.
“What can change is the focus product depending on the current scenario,” said Puga, citing, for example, greater diversification in allocations.
According to the executive, the average number of accounts opened at modalmais went from 2 thousand a day before the pandemic, to 3 thousand now, with a total of active clients close to 1 million.
In the view of Alan Gandelman, who recently assumed command of Planner Corretora, even investors who were hurt by the strong negative adjustment earlier in the year tend to persist in the stock market.
Those who have suffered less or have more resources, he explained, should see the fall in interest rates and consider the stock market with a higher income potential and take the opportunity to buy. “The most injured investor is difficult to know how he will act, but I believe he is waiting to see what the crisis looks like and then invest again.”