Zach Pandl is a portfolio manager and strategist for Columbia Management, based in Minneapolis. Mr. Pandl focuses on research relating to the macroeconomy and government policy and their implications for interest rate markets. He chairs the Columbia Management Interest Rate Committee, which is responsible for formulating and articulating the firm’s view on interest rates in the U.S. and other developed markets. Mr. Pandl joined the firm in 2012 and has been a member of the investment community since 2006.
Prior to joining Columbia Management, Mr. Pandl was senior economist at Goldman, Sachs & Co. in New York. There he was responsible for original research on the U.S. economy and interest rates and the development of proprietary analytical tools. Previously, he held positions at Nomura Securities and Lehman Brothers.
Mr. Pandl earned his B.S. in economics from the University of St. Thomas and his Masters in economics from New York University.
In a highly indebted economy, there is no fixed cap on the level of interest rates. Any increase in interest rates must be consistent with tolerable debt service ratios, the existing stock of debt and private sector savings. It’s in this context where Fed officials’ delicate approach to the exit process looks most understandable. The
Prospective returns for Treasuries now look poor across the curve—not just at the front end. Yield curves tend to flatten as central banks raise short-term rates, but valuations have now moved beyond the point where these trades make sense. Investors should brace for higher interest rates, not just a flattening yield curve. When the facts
ECB action this week maybe not enough to restore confidence by itself, but it signals a readiness to defend the inflation target, thus lowering odds of Japanification. U.S. growth accelerating into September 16-17 FOMC meeting. Look for another cut to bond purchases and more clues on the exit game plan. In typical fashion, last week’s
At last week’s Jackson Hole Symposium Janet Yellen was not the dove we thought we knew. Balanced remarks on labor market and cumulative progress toward recovery put her views close to center of FOMC. We see this as further confirmation that Fed leadership is increasingly comfortable with moving toward an exit from zero interest rates—likely
Fed officials have highlighted underemployment but offered little guidance about how this issue affects the policy outlook. Traditional tools like the Taylor Rule need to be recalibrated if the central bank focuses on a different measure of slack, so they offer little guidance to investors at the moment. We hope to learn more at this
Four factors figure empirically into how and why inflation moves: (1) commodity prices, (2) spare capacity, (3) changes in exchange rates, and (4) monetary policy. These same factors argue for a gradual recovery in U.S. inflation in the year ahead, which could be a headwind for high-quality fixed-income returns. In contrast to U.S. markets, in
Today’s low unemployment rate indicates modest slack in labor market, which implies earlier Fed rate hikes and/or more inflation risk. The decline in labor force participation in recent years now looks mostly structural. Investors should remain cautious around U.S. interest rate risk despite a solid first half of 2014. Excerpted from Zach Pandl’s newest whitepaper
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