Rising Rates: Time to Position, Not Panic

It finally happened. After endless discussion about the potential for rates to rise, they finally did—in a big way. During May and June, the 10-year US Treasury yield soared by nearly one percent, and markets reeled. Instead of panicking, investors should make sure their portfolios are positioned effectively.

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Bonds: Born to Be Mild

A 30-year bull market for bonds has come to an end, but this does not make a bear market inevitable, in our view.

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Gauging the Mortgage Trade Today

Doug Peebles and Matthew D. Bass Is the mortgage trade over? No, and in some ways, it’s just beginning.

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TAG Could Be Tagged in Fiscal-Cliff Negotiations

Doug Peebles, Jon Denfeld and Ed Dombrowski Caught up in the wrangling over the US fiscal cliff is a little-publicized program that could have big implications for short-term investors and bond yields if the program expires on December 31. If the Transaction Account Guarantee (TAG) program ends, huge sums of money may start looking for a new [...]

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Do TIPS Pose a Hidden Risk to Seekers of Inflation Protection?

Treasury-inflation protected securities, or TIPS, have been a popular choice for investors concerned about future inflation. And TIPS’ returns have been impressive in recent years. But the main contributor to TIPS’ performance isn’t inflation. It’s an ingredient that could become as hurtful down the road as it’s been helpful in the past.

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How Would Municipals Fare Under Romney?

Last month, we wrote that changes to the tax code being discussed in Washington would affect the value of municipal bonds. While that analysis still holds true, that was before the election campaign engines really revved up. Now there’s more chatter, if not more clarity. My colleague Michael Brooks weighs in.

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Challenges in Today’s Municipal Market

Most fixed-income investments carry two key risks: interest-rate risk and credit risk. Both affect a bond’s value in the market. But before the 2008 financial crisis, interest-rate risk was the primary concern of many investors and investment managers—credit risk was much less of a consideration. My colleague Michael Brooks explains why.

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Could Tax Reform Hurt Municipal Bond Prices?

Tax rates and federal government expenditures are being discussed in Washington. The ultimate result could affect the value of municipal bonds. My colleague Michael Brooks explains.

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The Underfunded Pension: States Take Action

State and local governments with significant pension funding shortfalls are coming under increased political pressure due to new transparency rules in accounting. My colleague Joe Rosenblum examines their options.

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Municipal Pensions: A Big Problem?

Underfunded pension systems pose significant challenges to many state and local governments. For a few, it’s an immediate problem. But as my colleague Joe Rosenblum explains, for most municipalities, pension troubles aren’t really the proverbial last straw.

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