In this excerpt from the latest Franklin Templeton Thinks, Franklin Templeton Fixed Income Group examines how machine learning techniques can measure the risks of consumer and home loans—helping pinpoint credit risks they think are worth taking.
The US high-yield bond market has an impressive record when it comes to recovering drawdowns quickly. But how much can an investor who stays put reasonably expect to earn?
The current widespread optimism about the US economy is largely justified, in our view, by its strong fundamentals, particularly the positive backdrop for consumers. Despite the economy’s robust growth, we do not view the recent rise in US Treasury yields as heralding the start of a major selloff across bond markets.
A little over 10 years ago, few people had heard of mortgage-backed securities (MBS). Yet that changed when MBS brought the global financial system to its knees. Today, they’re still a pivotal part of the system, with the US Federal Reserve (Fed) the largest holder.
The US economy has continued to perform well on many fronts, with positive readings for growth, employment and inflation. In terms of growth, the stimulus effect from tax cuts was clearly visible in second-quarter 2018 data, and could be maintained for at least another quarter, in our view.
We think the US economy remains in good shape, with the rate of growth potentially picking up, a labor market that is tight but attracting new workers, and inflation that still seems relatively subdued. Boosted by tax cuts and spending increases, these favorable conditions could continue for some time.
We see the US economy as maintaining its current path of respectable but not overly robust growth. Underlying fundamentals and economic momentum remain constructive, while we do not foresee an acceleration in growth to a level that would swiftly create inflationary pressures.
The opening months of 2018 have seen volatility return to global financial markets, but we think it is important to stress US economic fundamentals have remained broadly the same. After an unusually long period of calm in many markets, the reappearance of volatility at some point seemed likely, even if the speed of market gyrations has been unsettling for investors.
Worried about rising defaults? There are good reasons not to be. Not only do high defaults not translate into poor high-yield returns, but we don’t expect a slew of defaults in 2018.
The constructive conditions for the US economy remain in place, in our view, in keeping with an increasingly solid expansion across the rest of the world. US consumers have been benefiting from an economy that appears close to full employment and a stock market at record levels, while a vibrant corporate sector has been buoyed further by recent tax changes.
We believe the US economy’s current combination of moderately strong growth and low inflation is likely to see a further slow-but-steady tightening of monetary policy, following the confirmation by the US Federal Reserve (Fed) at its December meeting of a widely expected interest-rate rise.
The economic backdrop has remained supportive, both in the United States and globally, and should allow the US Federal Reserve (Fed) to continue raising interest rates at a measured pace, in our view. Jerome Powell’s nomination as Fed chair points to continuity in monetary policy in the near term...
What’s an investor to do, when faced with a Fed that’s gearing up to raise rates? Many investors over the past year have poured money into bank loans, in hopes of finding a panacea. Unfortunately, the bank loan market is not what it seems.
Recent data have supported our view that the drivers of the US economy’s solid expansion remain in place, and should allow the US Federal Reserve (Fed) to move further toward its goal of normalizing interest rates. Some data releases have clearly been skewed by the recent major hurricanes, but we feel any negative impact on the economy is likely to be transient and outweighed by demand arising from reconstruction.
It’s not normal. When a fixed-income sector beats the S&P 500 over an extended period and by a meaningful amount, investors do a double take.
The issues that have dominated news cycles in recent weeks should not obscure the robust underlying fundamentals of the US economy, in our view. Though some short-term weather-related disruption is possible, the economy seems to be maintaining its path of moderately strong growth, aided by healthy contributions from consumer spending and business investment.
In this month’s Global Economic Perspective, Franklin Templeton Fixed Income Group takes a look at recent US economic data, and increased skepticism among many market participants about whether the Federal Reserve will implement another increase in interest rates before the end of the year.
In this month’s Global Economic Perspective, Franklin Templeton Fixed Income Group examines whether inflation may gain momentum in the United Sates, why it’s pleased the European Central Bank has resisted tapering of its quantitative easing program and why investors in all markets need to be cognizant of political risks.
Franklin Templeton Fixed Income Group talks monetary policy, European politics in the April Global Economic Perspective.
Passive global bond investors may be getting more than they bargained for—in terms of risk, that is. That’s because lower-yielding debt is overrepresented in the benchmark, providing less buffer—and passive investing locks other types of risk into the portfolio.
In this month’s Global Economic Perspective, Franklin Templeton Fixed Income Group weighs in on the factors spurring the US Fed’s decision to raise rates, why the ECB’s Draghi is likely to resist calls to adopt a more hawkish line, and why the backdrop for emerging markets has improved.
For all that political events and speculation about policy direction have dominated news cycles over recent months, the US economy’s key fundamentals have changed remarkably little, in our view. The backdrop appears to us to be constructive, as a healthy level of consumer spending has been increasingly reinforced by a recovery in corporate earnings and investment.
While heartened by the bounce in oil prices after the multi-decade lows reached early in the year, any significant further rally in energy prices would seem to us to require a far more vibrant global economy. As the IMF’s (and the Fed’s) relatively subdued outlooks make clear, it is hard to anticipate such a scenario occurring anytime soon.