Rieger Report: State G.O. municipal bonds have underperformed

Overall, general obligation bonds have underperformed revenue bonds over the last five years  of low rates.   State general obligation bonds have been the sector that is holding back returns as the lower yield and shorter duration characteristics of these bonds have resulted in muted returns in the up market. While revenue bonds have a larger foot print by par Read more […]

Asian Fixed Income: Continuing Rally for Indonesian Bonds

Indonesian bonds, as tracked by the S&P Indonesia Bond Index, gained 5.59% YTD as of April 5, 2017. This is a continuation of the strong growth trend observed in 2016, when the index increased 13.7% owing to the Bank Indonesia’s cut in interest rates on six occasions throughout the year. Indonesia has been one of Read more […]

April: A Testing Month for VIX Traders

Shorting VIX® was among the top strategies in the past year.  XIV and SVXY both went up over 50% in Q1 2017 (~15% in March alone), almost doubled in the past six months, and returned ~180% over the past 12 months (see Exhibit 1).  However, the declining VIX spot level can only explain part of Read more […]

Diversification and Risk Management

Recently, I attended a session by an expert on good health.  I was pleasantly surprised to learn that besides diet and exercise, emotional and spiritual health is essential to a holistic lifestyle. When there are many elements to achieving a certain goal, it is of primary importance that each of those elements is included and Read more […]

Active Management Underperformance in 2016 Generally Higher Than in Previous Years

European equity markets, as measured by the S&P Europe 350, went up 3.44% in 2016, yet the average performance of active managers invested in Europe was negative, whether measured on an asset-weighted or equal-weighted basis.  Over the one-year period, more than 80% of active managers invested in European equities underperformed their respective S&P DJI benchmark. Read more […]

Will Oil’s Madness Upset Industrial Metals?

Although many analysts anticipated U.S. oil producers would fill the gap from production cuts by OPEC and some non-OPEC producers, not many probably guessed Brent would have its second worst Q1 in history, losing 7.6%, after the implementation of the production cuts.  According to the Information Energy Agency (IEA,) the U.S. saw a triple surge in Read more […]

Evolution of the Green Bond Market

A few weeks ago, Martina Macpherson wrote the blog post The Rise of Green Bonds, in which she provided an overview and outlined some of the drivers behind their recent increase in issuance.  Indeed, green bond issuance ramped up significantly in 2016, and the accelerated pace is expected to continue this year.  Total issuance of Read more […]

How Now The Dow? A Q1 Retrospective.

With March in our rear view mirror, let’s take a quick look at some highlights from the Dow Jones Industrial Average’s performance during the first quarter of 2017: In Short – The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the first quarter of 2017 at 20,663.22 – up 900+ points for a 4.56% YTD return. Biggest Themes Read more […]

SPIVA® India Year-End 2016 Scorecard: Underperformance of Active Funds Versus S&P BSE Benchmark Indices

Various events during the second half of 2016, both global—such as the U.S. Federal Reserve rate hike and the U.S. elections—and domestic—such as passage of the GST bill in Parliament and demonetization—kept Indian markets volatile.  Over the one-year period ending December 2016, Indian equity markets underperformed Indian bond markets.  The S&P BSE 100, which seeks Read more […]

Rising Interest Rates – Boon or Bane for Pan Asian Dividend Strategies?

In December 2016, the U.S. Fed raised the interest rate for the second time in the current rate hike cycle.  Three more rate hikes were expected for this year, one of which took place in March.  In a low interest rate environment, companies that have increasing dividends or offer high dividend yields look attractive to Read more […]