Fixed Income

Taking Chips off the Table

Posted by Michael Strauss, Chief Investment Strategist and Chief Economist | Ryan Driscoll, CFA, Director on Feb 22, 2017

Topic: Equities Fixed Income Market Commentary

The question we are often asked is…when should investors begin to take chips off the table? The S&P 500 Index has delivered a 16+ percentage point relative gain compared to the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Bond Index since the start of this fiscal year. Near term, we may see a return to a choppy market where stocks still best bonds but with a smaller differential.

Read now

Private Credit Opportunities

Posted by James Meisner | Vincent Kravec, CFA, Associate Director, Fixed Income Strategies on Feb 8, 2017

Topic: Asset Allocation Fixed Income Investment Strategy

Much has been made of the challenges endowment, foundation and nonprofit investors face in achieving a CPI+ five percent return target. One way to improve the probability of attaining this goal is to take advantage of the so-called “liquidity premium.”

Read now

Active vs. passive: There is no debate

Posted by Mark J.P. Anson, Chief Investment Officer, Commonfund on Jan 31, 2017

Topic: Asset Allocation Equities Fixed Income Investment Strategy Risk Management

Like King Kong vs. Godzilla, the investment debate of active vs. passive continues. I really enjoyed those cheesy old movies from Japan that pitted the two big monsters of science fiction. But as I recall, there was never a clear winner: Sometimes King Kong won the battle, sometimes Godzilla.

Read now

Where Did Our Operating Income Go?

Posted by Michael Strauss, Chief Investment Strategist and Chief Economist | Jon Speare | Ryan Driscoll, CFA, Director on Sep 15, 2016

Topic: Fixed Income Governance and Policy Industry Knowledge Operating Assets

Treasury managers face a new challenge to an old problem. Their institutions historically have relied on operating income to provide a necessary influx to operating budgets. Prior to 2008, risk free or minimal risk investments provided support for operations with returns that are currently unimaginable. The concept of a risk-free instrument yielding anything significantly above 0% in the future does not take into account the post crisis world of capital markets, specifically cash markets. So, the world of five percent cash returns is gone, and has little chance of re-emerging. This leaves a shortfall in how treasury managers balance budgets and fund capital initiatives going forward.

Read now

Global Bonds – Not what they used to be

Posted by James Meisner | Vincent Kravec, CFA, Associate Director, Fixed Income Strategies on Jul 28, 2016

Topic: Fixed Income

A constant topic of conversation in the financial media in recent years has been the degree to which central bank intervention across the globe has suppressed volatility in the markets and has caused global bond yields to fall to historically low levels. Some market veterans with a long-term perspective shake their heads in disbelief at current levels, warning others like a modern-day Cassandra, that bond investors will be in for a world of hurt once yields begin to rise.

Read now

Multi-Asset Quarterly Investment Performance Review & Outlook | Q1 2016

Posted by Mark J.P. Anson, Chief Investment Officer, Commonfund | Steve Snyder, Managing Director, Head of Multi-Asset Program, Commonfund | Jeff Long | Alec Rapaport, Managing Director, Head of Fixed Income Strategies | Michael Strauss, Chief Investment Strategist and Chief Economist on May 4, 2016

Topic: Asset Allocation Equities Fixed Income Market Commentary

Multi-Asset Quarterly Investment Performance Review and Outlook

Read now

How Do You Get to Nine Percent?

Posted by Alec Rapaport, Managing Director, Head of Fixed Income Strategies | Vincent Kravec, CFA, Associate Director, Fixed Income Strategies on Apr 25, 2016

Topic: Fixed Income Investment Strategy

For much of the first quarter, U.S. below-investment grade corporate bond indices reported yields that exceeded 9 percent, leading to spreads, or additional yield to comparable Treasuries, in excess of 7 ½ percent. Even after the substantial rally in risk assets during March, yields were reported greater than 8 percent with average spreads north of 7 percent. Currently well above long run historical averages, spreads seemingly more than compensated investors for the inherent credit and liquidity risk in high yield bonds. Sounds great, I’ll take it! Or should I?

Read now

Xchange Webcast: Risk, Return and Volatility

Posted by Mark J.P. Anson, Chief Investment Officer, Commonfund | Brett Lane, Managing Director on Mar 22, 2016

Topic: Asset Allocation Equities Fixed Income Investment Strategy Market Commentary Risk Management

Xchange Webcast: Risk, Return and Volatility with Chief Investment Officer Mark Anson

Read now

Regulation Meets Policy in the Cash Markets

Posted by Alec Rapaport, Managing Director, Head of Fixed Income Strategies | Vincent Kravec, CFA, Associate Director, Fixed Income Strategies on Jan 26, 2016

Topic: Fixed Income Governance and Policy Industry Knowledge Market Commentary Operating Assets

Right now, central bank policy and money market reform are front and center in the cash markets. Are historic indicators of market stress cause for concern? Or are they reflecting the technical impacts of money market reform?

Read now

Multi-Asset Quarterly Investment Performance Review & Outlook | Q4 2015

Posted by Mark J.P. Anson, Chief Investment Officer, Commonfund | Steve Snyder, Managing Director, Head of Multi-Asset Program, Commonfund | Nick De Monico, Former interim CIO, Commonfund | Jeff Long | Alec Rapaport, Managing Director, Head of Fixed Income Strategies | Michael Strauss, Chief Investment Strategist and Chief Economist on Jan 25, 2016

Topic: Asset Allocation Equities Fixed Income Market Commentary

Multi-Asset Quarterly Investment Performance Review and Outlook

Read now

Global Economic & Investment Outlook:
2016 – A Year of Transition

Posted by Commonfund on Jan 4, 2016

Topic: Asset Allocation Equities Fixed Income Hedge Funds Market Commentary Private Capital

Our 2016 Global Economic and Investment Outlook provides a detailed look at our expectations and portfolio positioning going forward.

Read now

Much Ado About Nothing

Posted by Michael Strauss, Chief Investment Strategist and Chief Economist on Nov 4, 2015

Topic: Equities Fixed Income Market Commentary

Market pundits are obsessing over the timing of the Fed move on interest rates with increasing divergence on “when” but not “if”. The reality is that this timing doesn’t really matter – whether it be December, March or somewhere in between.

Read now

Grasping at Straws When Reaching for Yield?

Posted by Alec Rapaport, Managing Director, Head of Fixed Income Strategies on Sep 24, 2015

Topic: Fixed Income Risk Management

It feels a little like the movie Groundhog Day, where Bill Murray wakes up in Punxsutawney, PA, repeatedly reliving the same day. As in the movie, the overwhelming cycle of fear and forgetfulness seems to be playing out once again in the credit markets. Globally, central banks have adopted policy stances which offer investors negative real yields on deposits. Money is not a store of value and investors have the privilege of paying others for its ‘safekeeping’. Investors have been desperate for yield and we cannot help but ask: are they grasping at straws?

Read now

Managing Operating Assets: Part II
Market Environment

Posted by Jon Speare on Aug 13, 2015

Topic: Fixed Income Operating Assets

In our last article, we discussed the changing structure of liquidity products available to investors. Now, we will revisit the topic and take a look at events that could potentially impact the short-term investment markets over the next 12 to 18 months.

Read now

Multi-Asset Quarterly Investment Performance Review & Outlook | Q2 2015

Posted by Steve Snyder, Managing Director, Head of Multi-Asset Program, Commonfund | Nick De Monico, Former interim CIO, Commonfund | Jeff Long | Alec Rapaport, Managing Director, Head of Fixed Income Strategies | Michael Strauss, Chief Investment Strategist and Chief Economist on Jul 22, 2015

Topic: Asset Allocation Equities Fixed Income Market Commentary

Multi- Asset Quarterly Investment Performance Review and Outlook

Read now

Managing Operating Assets: Part I
Clarity in Liquidity

Posted by Jon Speare on Apr 5, 2015

Topic: Fixed Income Operating Assets

Since the fallout of the 2008 Financial Crisis, Cash Investors have been waiting for a “new normal” environment, which would replace the recent period of zero yields and uncertain regulatory reforms. The past five years have proven to be an interim “healing” timeframe where monetary policy from the Federal Reserve and evolving sanctions from regulators focused on the improvement of financial institutions’ capital structures. The consequences for institutional investors were highly uncertain risk/return characteristics for cash and liquidity investments.

Read now

Subscribe & Manage Your Frequency to Insights Blog

Posted by Commonfund on Jan 5, 2014

Topic: Asset Allocation Equities Fixed Income Governance and Policy Hedge Funds Industry Knowledge Market Commentary Operating Assets Outsourced Investing Partners People Private Capital Quant Strategies Responsible Investing Risk Management

Subscribe to the Insights Blog from Commonfund to stay informed with the latest information for nonprofit investors and the public sector.

Read now