The Right Fit: Global Bonds and DC Plans

Alison Martier

At a time when US defined contribution plans are seeking to control risk and enhance returns, hedged global bonds can improve outcomes for participants and sponsors. But how do plans incorporate global bonds in core menus and target-date funds?

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Tinkering with the Core Bond Recipe

Alison Martier

This is the time of year when, in almost every American household, the tinkerer in the family eyes the recipe box. Certain venerable traditions will make it to the Thanksgiving table intact. A cousin or an in-law is sure to bring an entirely new dish. And some traditional plates could use some freshening up. That’s the case with core fixed income.

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Get Smart About Giving

Tara Thompson Popernik

With the year-end drawing near, many US taxpayers are starting to think about how much to give to tax-deductible causes. But too often, even financially sophisticated people miss a simple way to boost the tax benefit from their charitable donations: by giving appreciated securities, rather than cash.

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Is Levering Bonds a Loser’s Game Today?

Michael DePalma

By Michael DePalma (pictured) and Arnab Nilim

Multi-asset strategies like risk parity owe much of their popularity to their ability to navigate the global financial crisis. Lately, critics have cited levered bond returns as the driver—and as a looming headwind. We think they’re missing a key point.

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Forget Volatility; Watch Credit Quality, Maturity

Ashish Shah

If you’re worried about the recent spike in bond market volatility, we’ve got a bit of advice: Don’t be. There are plenty of other risks—chiefly credit quality and flatter yield curves—that are causing shakeups in some corners of the fixed-income world. Happily, there are things you can do about them.

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GDP Leaves False Trail in Emerging Equities

Morgan Harting

Morgan C. Harting (pictured) and Nelson Yu

Many investors in emerging markets (EMs) believe that identifying the fastest-growing economies is the key to finding higher returns. But while this approach has been effective in fixed-income investing, our research shows that it’s fairly useless for guiding country selection in developing-market equities.

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Time to Rethink China’s Equity Markets

Stuart Rae

Plans for a new Shanghai-Hong Kong trading system are among three developments that we expect will give a boost to China’s equity markets in the medium to long term. So despite concern about the economic outlook, now could be the time to begin rethinking China from an investment perspective.

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US Housing Rebound Puts Spotlight on Real Estate

Matthew D. Bass

With a US housing recovery in full swing, this may be a good time for investors to consider securities backed by residential real estate. We think they’re an attractive way to diversify exposure to high-yield bonds and other risk-seeking assets.

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Brainpower: Man vs. Machine

Benjamin Ruegsegger

Throughout history, humans have been the most intelligent beings on earth. But is this about to change? The advancement of neural networks could be the single most important development in helping machines think more like humans. Investors should take note.

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Does Stock Picking Still Work in Emerging Markets?

Sammy Suzuki

Many things have changed in emerging markets (EMs) over the last two decades. Markets are more efficient than they used to be. But we believe that developing countries still provide fertile ground for finding stocks poised to outperform.

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