The IMF Comment May Push South Africans to Sovereigns

The South African economy, Africa’s second-largest economy after Nigeria, may be helped by reforms put in place by President Cyril Ramaphosa. Earlier this year, South Africa suffered a setback, as data showed the economy dipping into a recession, but Ramophosa has since unveiled a stimulus and recovery plan to try and get it back on Read more […]

Shelter from the Storm

As we approach the final month of a rollercoaster year in the markets, adding a factor lens can provide perspective, especially when it comes to low volatility. The goal of low volatility strategies is to provide investors with protection in falling markets and participation in rising markets. The need for protection has become more relevant Read more […]

Sizing Up U.S. Equities In Managing Brexit Risk

One of the main recent headlines has been the strength of the UK pound from the proposed Brexit transition.  This brings into question how investors in the UK and Europe may possibly position themselves in the U.S. equity market. Notice in the past five days, the USD to GBP started from a high of 1.305 Read more […]

Why Credit Should Not Be an Independent Asset Class Within a Risk Parity Benchmark

This blog post was co-authored with Matthew Brown, President and COO, MSR Investments, LLC. We believe there are two critical criteria an index must meet to be considered a benchmark:  1) it must be easy to implement as a viable investment alternative to managers that pursue the same strategy, and 2) it must define only Read more […]

Valuing Research: Three Questions

We recently introduced a new measure, capacity-adjusted dispersion, to help conceptualize the relative value of research across different markets.  Intuitively, capacity-adjusted dispersion combines the potential opportunity for outperformance (dispersion) and the potential size of active positions (capitalization) in a given market.  Exhibit 1 shows the capacity-adjusted figures for several markets, globally.  All else being equal, Read more […]

The Virtues of Slow and Steady

For most of 2018, the S&P 500 Low Volatility Index® underperformed its parent S&P 500. Through the first nine months of 2018, the S&P 500 climbed 11% while the S&P 500 Low Volatility Index was up only 6%. Then October came and, in one month of acute volatility, the low volatility index recaptured parity with Read more […]

Leveraged Loan Market – Growing but Lower Protection?

In a prior blog,[1] we highlighted the return profile and yield of the S&P/LSTA U.S. Leveraged Loan 100 Index. We showed that carry is the dominant driver of returns. In this follow-up post, we review additional characteristics of the senior loan market and its evolution in recent years. The leveraged loan deal size has increased Read more […]

October Outperformance for the S&P Risk Parity Indices

Traditionally known for spooky ghosts and witches, October was also a scary month for investors. In spite of an end-of-month rally, global stocks recorded their worst monthly loss since 2011, wiping out USD 5 trillion of investor value. Furthermore, investors were spooked by a rare simultaneous drop in bond prices. In short, this was not Read more […]

Stocks Rocked The House Post Midterm Elections

After the S&P 500 logged its 9th worst Oct. on record, losing 6.9%, it has bounced back 2.6% month-to-date through Nov. 9, 2018.  Though the monthly returns for the eight Novembers following the historically bad Octobers were only positive twice – in 1978 (President Jimmy Carter midterm year) and 1933 – the fact there was Read more […]

The World’s Largest Pension Fund Engages in Carbon Disclosure

This blog post was co-authored with Dr Richard Mattison, Chief Executive Officer, Trucost, part of S&P Global On Sept. 25, 2018, Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF)—the world’s largest pension fund—announced its selection of two new low-carbon indices, the S&P/JPX Carbon Efficient Index and the S&P Global Ex-Japan LargeMid Carbon Efficient Index, with an allocation Read more […]