Poof! There Goes the American Retirement Dream…Again

When it comes to planning for retirement, we’ve been setting US workers up to fail.

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UK Economic Quagmire Adds Pressure for Monetary Policy Change

Bank of England governor-elect, Mark Carney, has raised hopes that the central bank may soon switch to a nominal GDP target. In our view, the costs outweigh the benefits, but the attractions of a radical new approach will grow if the economy remains stuck in the doldrums.

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The Markets and the Cult of Now

Crisis-battered investors continue to favor the relative certainty of current income over the “maybe” of future capital appreciation. If you ask me, however, this hyperfixation on Now is creating some provocative opportunities in Later.

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Pay Attention to Pricing Power in 2013

Revisions to earnings forecasts started to improve in late 2012 as analysts’ worst macroeconomic fears eased. But this year, global companies may find it tougher to boost profits while their pricing power remains weak.

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Do Smaller DC Plans Need Advisors?

Many smaller US defined contribution (DC) plans rely on guidance from advisors, and the majority of these DC plan sponsors are happy they do so. But how do plans gauge whether they really need advisors, and assess the benefits against the cost of advice?

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Will Emerging Market Earnings Rebound in 2013?

For two years, emerging markets companies have delivered inferior earnings growth and investment returns compared to peers in sluggish developed market economies. Now, the consensus is that earnings growth will catapult from near-zero in 2012 to 13 per cent in 2013. Hopes were high at the end of 2010 and 2011, too, yet analysts were then [...]

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Municipals Escape Taxation for Now

In the end, the American Taxpayer Relief Act did not eliminate the tax exemption for municipal bonds or modify it any way. In fact, the increase in the top marginal tax rate makes muni bonds more attractive versus taxable bonds. And the Medicare surtax on investment income, enacted in 2010 but effective in 2013, makes muni bonds more [...]

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Surging EM Corporate Bond Issuance: Cause for Concern?

New bond issuance by emerging-market companies boomed in 2012, leading to fears of a bubble. But we think this market growth is positive for investors, rather than a harbinger of soaring debt levels or deteriorating credit quality.

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Looking Under the Hood at High-Yield Bank Loans

Ashish Shah, Gershon Distenfeld and Ivan Rudolph-Shabinsky When you’re shopping for a car, you take a look under the hood to see what makes the thing run. You also check out the car’s features: does it have heated seats, a rear-view camera, a GPS?

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How Much Hedge Fund Exposure Makes Sense?

Our research suggests that a well-diversified allocation to hedge funds might improve portfolio returns, but their greatest benefit is the risk reduction that comes from their low correlation to stocks. Here’s why.

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