Category Archives: Fixed Income

High Yield Bonds in a Rising Rate Environment

Since the “taper tantrum” back in 2013, the prospect of the Fed easing monetary policy has been one of the top concerns for global market participants.  The Fed has increased rates twice since then: once in December 2015 and again in 2016.  With more rate hikes expected and U.S. inflation firming up, long-term interest rates Read more […]

Longer-Maturity and Lower-Rated Sukuk Continue to Outperform

The Dow Jones Sukuk Total Return Index (ex-Reinvestment), which seeks to track USD-denominated, investment-grade sukuk, had a great start in 2017 and rose 1.24% year-to-date (YTD) as of Feb. 10, 2017. A total of 19 sukuk with total outstanding par of USD 15.75 billion were added into the index last year; however, no new sukuk Read more […]

Rieger Report: The Uncorrelated

Why worry?  New highs for the U.S. stock market indices will keep coming, right?  Just in case, this might be a good time to examine asset classes that are not correlated to the equity market or the “uncorrelated”. Corporate bonds of the issuers in the S&P 500 are tracked in the S&P 500 Bond Index.  As a group Read more […]

Under Armour Falters, but Consumer Discretionary Stays Positive

The sports apparel and footwear company Under Armour recently experienced a highly publicized loss of stock value, based on a couple of missteps.  The first misstep was falling short of Wall Street’s earning expectations, which caused multiple brokerage firms to downgrade their stock recommendations.  The second was inaccurate forecasting of the company’s revenue; it only Read more […]

Does the Outperformance of UDIBonos to MBonos Have Legs?

Since the U.S. presidential election on Nov. 8, 2016, the S&P/BMV Sovereign UDIBONOS Bond Index, which seeks to track inflation-protected Mexican government bonds, outperformed its nominal counterpart, the S&P/BMV Sovereign MBONOS Bond Index (see Exhibit 1).  What was the driver behind this outperformance, and can we expect it to persist? Exhibit 1: S&P Mexico Sovereign Read more […]

Try a TIPS Mixer in Your Equities Cocktail

As product manager of the S&P STRIDE Indices, I sometimes find myself extolling the virtues of Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS), which I believe are an underappreciated asset class.  When inflation is relatively tame, people often ask why they should think about TIPS.  The answer is that TIPS don’t hedge expected inflation—that’s already priced in.  TIPS Read more […]

Inflation

Supported by a stronger economy and higher oil prices, recent readings of inflation are rising. The Fed’s principal gauge, the personal consumption expenditures deflator excluding food and energy (Core PCE) is approaching but still below its 2% target. The more widely recognized CPI and CPI excluding food and energy are both rising and a bit Read more […]

Asian Fixed Income: 2016 Pan Asia Report Card

The S&P Pan Asia Bond Index, which seeks to track local currency bonds in 10 countries and is calculated in USD, continued to be weighed down by the weakness of local currencies in 2016, dropping 1.86% for the year.  Meanwhile, its yield-to-maturity widened 38 bps to 3.75% YTD.  Reversing the trend seen in 2015, the Read more […]

The Source of Uncertainty

In 2017 politics, not economics will be the major source of market uncertainty.  The world’s major economies moved past the financial crisis and Great Recession: unemployment rates are at more acceptable levels and central banks are discussing the end of quantitative easing. Equity markets in the US and the UK made new all-time highs while Read more […]

Year in Review: 2016 Asset Class Performance

The high-yield corporate bond segment, as measured by the S&P U.S. High Yield Corporate Bond Index, was the top-performing asset class for 2016, posting a total return of 17.2%.  Despite a rather tumultuous first quarter, 2016 finished with a clear “risk-on” sentiment as evidenced by the asset classes that topped the list. On Feb. 11, Read more […]