Perspectives Blog

Special report – 2014 mid-year review and outlook

Columbia Management, Investment Team | June 16, 2014

Key investment professionals review the first half of 2014 and share their insights into what may be ahead for the second half of the year. Interest rates Zach Pandl, Portfolio manager and strategist Review: Government bond yields declined in early 2014, both in the U.S. and in other developed market economies. This surprising change in course after increases in 2013 caught many investors off guard. In our view, declining interest rates reflect…

Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water – The case for long muni bond funds

Catherine Stienstra, Senior Portfolio Manager | January 29, 2014

…ests of investors? Contrary to popular opinion, we believe that a strong investment case can be made for investing in longer bonds, even in today’s uncertain environment when many are anticipating higher interest rates in the year ahead. Two of the most compelling arguments in support of long bonds are: 1) the current appealing level of tax-exempt income and 2) the total return opportunity they represent for long-term investors. Come April 15, mi…

What’s the outlook for muni bonds?

James Dearborn, Head of Municipal Bonds | June 19, 2014

…considering the impact of taxes on non-exempt securities. As we reach the halfway point of 2014, it’s a good opportunity to review our full-year outlook for the municipal bond market and consider what the second half of the year may have in store. While we anticipated that municipal bonds would post positive returns in 2014, year-to-date performance is already better than we imagined was achievable for the entire year. Through the end of May, m…

More light, less tunnel

Marie M. Schofield, CFA, Chief Economist and Senior Portfolio Manager | October 31, 2013

After a data vacuum of almost three weeks, government agencies have started to gear up again with key reports; unfortunately, they present a picture of economic activity in the third quarter that ended on a soft note. While the third quarter is typically the weakest in a given year, the current trend in employment is disappointing. It appears the elusive turn in capital spending will await 2014 and then see only a modest build at some point nex…

The importance of taking a long-term perspective

Jeffrey Knight, CFA, Global Head of Investment Solutions and Asset Allocation | February 3, 2014

We examine the value in maintaining a long term outlook for major asset classes We review our forecast for several major asset classes over the next five years Why maintaining realistic expectations for long term asset class performance is so important For asset allocation decisions, we find great value in maintaining a long-term outlook for major asset classes. Twice a year, in fact, we conduct an extensive update of our five-year return fore…

Q2 fixed income outlook – Hitting for the cycle

Gene Tannuzzo, CFA, Senior Portfolio Manager | March 31, 2014

We have started to reduce exposure to high-quality bonds with limited upside potential and high-yield bonds in which credit risk appears too aggressive. Following weakness last year, emerging market debt has posted gains this year, and we expect further strength ahead as volatility subsides. While we expect a flatter yield curve over the next few months as investors focus on the timing and pace of rate increases, we don’t think they should avoi…

Gifting strategies with 529 plans

Columbia Management, Investment Team | December 3, 2013

529 college savings plans allow parents and relatives to implement advanced gifting strategies. Contributions can be prorated over five years without incurring federal gift tax consequences. With a 529 plan the account owner maintains control of the assets in the account even though contributions are considered completed gifts. Parents and relatives can benefit from advanced gifting strategies available only with 529 plans. With the current an…