2017 marks a number of financial anniversaries; the 1987 stockmarket crash, the 1997 Asian financial crisis, and the beginning of the global financial crisis. As we haven’t really experienced an extreme boom or crisis recently, looking back will be a refresher as to what could occur, but also provide a wider perspective on investment returns. Nothing is as evocative of the past as its music, so we accompany our look back with a soundtrack of those hits we think have withstood the test of time, and those hits that we would rather forget.
In my previous post I outlined the possible benefits of using multiple asset classes to achieve a more stable and attractive level of yield from an income-focused portfolio. In this post I take aim at targeting a fixed level of yield, showing that this objective could mean you miss the big picture.
Much like the choice between TV channels, income investing was easier in the old days. Investors seeking stable and attractive income from their investments needed to look no further than bonds. These days, with yields near historic lows, many investors are looking elsewhere.
With Philippe Coutinho and Alexis Sanchez staying at their clubs, the most recent football transfer window offers a great example of the availability bias at work and a counter example to the common investment adage “buy the rumour, sell the fact”.
Soviet-era Polish cinematography is often a source of seemingly absurd catchphrases repeated for generations. “How much sugar is in your sugar” is a classic one from the quirky professor in the 1973 comedy Man-Woman Wanted. When we target particular factors within our equity exposures, I increasingly find myself taking on the role of the professor as I try to answer the question “How much factor is in my factor?”. It might seem like an odd question but we can answer this by relying on simple factor definitions and a holistic approach to combining factors. It’s only once we know what our true exposures are, that we can consider how we avoid any unintended secondary exposures that have the potential to sour the overall outcome.
If 2016 was the financial market equivalent of gripping TV drama with surprise plot twists, 2017 has been the year of test pattern TV. So far in 2017, worries about North Korea, the French elections, or President Trump-related developments have only had short-lived and localised impacts on markets. So is there anything we need to be watching this summer?
Are we starting to see the promise from emerging market local currency debt? Emerging market local currency debt has had strong returns year-to-date but we remain cautious on its future outlook. Here we look at three charts that give us an insight into this asset class.