Perspectives Blog

Global asset allocation outlook (as of March 2014)

Columbia Management Global Asset Allocation Team, | April 7, 2014

After significant gains in 2013, equities took a breather in the first quarter of 2014 while fixed income assets rallied. The S&P 500 Index experienced a fair amount of volatility, retreating 5.8% at the start of the year and then rallying by more than 7% to end the quarter modestly higher. Within international markets, European, emerging markets (EM) and Japanese equities lagged U.S. equities. By the end of the quarter, however, risk assets…

Special report – Commodity markets outlook

Columbia Management, Investment Team | July 21, 2014

In the following Q&A, David Donora, Head of Commodities for Threadneedle Investments, addresses some of the key concerns currently facing investors in commodity markets, and explains his view of the outlook for the market. What is your outlook for commodities for the remainder of 2014? We are bullish on the macro outlook for the rest of 2014. The OECD countries and in particular North America, the region where economic growth is currently th…

India’s new government fires investor enthusiasm

Natasha Ebtehadj, Fund Manager, Threadneedle International Limited | September 8, 2014

The landslide victory of the pro-business Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has transformed investor sentiment towards India. As the new government puts its stamp on policy, it will create investment opportunities not only in the domestic economy but also in sectors exposed to government-led reform. We believe the new government could enact much needed reforms to stimulate investment and unlock India’s economic potential. India’s economy has been w…

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…

Asia’s emerging markets – Room to run

Dara White, Senior Portfolio Manager | November 10, 2014

As emerging markets investors, we like Asia because of its strong reform momentum and the depth of its stock market. Rising interest rates will be good for exports and Asia’s earnings story. Valuations, inflation rates and current accounts are at levels close to where they were from 2001 to 2005, the best period for emerging markets. Excerpted from Barron’s November 3, 2014 cover story in which Dara White and three other EM experts discuss opp…

Second quarter earnings preview

Tom West, Director of Equity Research | June 30, 2014

We believe YTD valuation improvement in stocks is more likely the result of basic supply and demand than an upward revision off corporate prospects. Going into corporate reporting season, we’re focused on whether the cyclical sectors show some signs of increasing activity. For the less cyclical sectors and consumer discretionary industries, we want to see if pricing holds up amid flattish demand and a tepid wage growth. In about a week, corpor…

Where’s Waldo? Be on the lookout for rising costs in a low growth world

Paul DiGiacomo, Senior Analyst | August 18, 2014

Broad measures of cost inflation (PPI and CPI) growth rates have remained near 2% for the past three years. Sharp increases have occurred in isolated areas like trucking, but the effect is far-reaching. Investors must be on the lookout for accelerating expense growth within a company or industry cost structure, as high inflation can lead to lower stock returns. Over the past three years, Producer Price Index (PPI) and Consumer Price Index (CPI…