investment insights

Observations on Index Concentration

January 2021

U.S. stock market performance, as measured by the S&P 500, the market capitalization weighted index of the largest 500 domestic stocks, has been driven by a small number of stocks over the past few years. The top five holdings now represent 21.9% of the S&P 500 as of December 31, 2020—the most concentrated the market has been since the 1970s during the “nifty fifty”. It is also striking that each of the top five holdings share a common theme: technology and e-commerce.

Knock-On Effects of Negative Interest Rates

January 2020

The 2008 financial crisis spurred central banks around the world to act aggressively by lowering policy rates close to zero and buying fixed income securities in the market, often referred to as quantitative easing. Post-recession some countries and regions were more affected than others, such as the European Union (EU) and Japan which have recovered at a slower rate than the U.S.

Observations on BBB Corporate Bonds

July 2019

Over the past decade, we have witnessed a broad shift in the riskiness of the corporate debt market. Companies have capitalized on a low interest rate environment, driven by global central bank stimulus, and issued elevated amounts of lower rated securities. 

Investment Insights: Market Forces Impacting the Yield Curve

October 2018

The U.S. Treasury yield curve has attracted a lot of attention this year as interest rates have risen. In this analysis, we outline several factors pushing the yield curve higher, as well as the offsetting forces keeping it from moving more than it already has.

Investment Insights: Bitcoin: The Basics of the Cryptocurrency Everyone is Talking About

February 2018

One of the most discussed topics in the investment world these days is bitcoin. Read our commentary to understand what cryptocurrencies are, their potential for disrupting the existing financial exchange system, and their viability for use in a diversified, institutional portfolio of assets.

Investment Insights: Emerging Markets: A Source of Viable and Sustainable Investments

June 2017

Interest in emerging markets continues to gain traction among investors – and for good reason. Read our Investment Insights commentary to understand why we encourage our clients to consider emerging markets as part of their investment portfolios.

Investment Insights: Observations on the French Presidential Election

May 2017

French presidential elections concluded recently, with En Marche! candidate Emmanuel Macron soundly defeating the populist National Front party candidate Marine Le Pen. Read our Investment Insights commentary for our takeaways.