Category Archives: Equities

Royal Commission, Regulation, and Rocky Markets

Over the past few months, there has been a flurry of activity in the financial advisor segment of Australia. In mid-September 2018, S&P Dow Jones Indices (S&P DJI) hosted an exchange-traded fund (ETF) seminar in Perth, Western Australia. This was S&P DJI’s second foray in the West, and with Perth being one of the world’s Read more […]

2018 Mid-Year SPIVA® Canada Scorecard – Challenging Times for Active Equity Managers

The latest Canada SPIVA® scorecard landed recently.  While data up to the end of June 2018 was consistent with results from previous SPIVA Canada scorecards – active management once again found it challenging to beat the passive benchmarks – there were pockets of success.  Here are a few highlights. Active managers found it difficult to Read more […]

The Case for Emerging Market Stocks

Despite looming threats to global trade, emerging market stocks are a staple of diversified equity portfolios. Emerging countries are a diverse group, accounting for about 28.8% of real world GDP (measured in 2005 U.S. dollars) as of Nov. 12, 2018, according to FactSet. The comparable figure for U.S. production is 25.4%. Year-over-year growth in real 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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

No New Airport for Mexico Brings Big Hits to Its Markets

On Monday, Oct. 29, 2018, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, president-elect of Mexico, announced that he would cancel the construction of the new airport in Mexico City, which had reached 30% completion. After a four-day unofficial referendum, in which less than 2% of the voters participated, the upcoming president (who will assume office on Dec. 1, Read more […]

The Value of Research: Combining Capacity & Opportunity

How much should a portfolio manager be willing to pay for research?  This is a question any manager has to answer, but it has recently become more pertinent as newly imposed European rules require the costs of investment research to be unbundled from trading.  Here is a brief overview of a stylized framework for estimating Read more […]