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Chief Investment Quarterly

Late Cycle Syndrome

The concern that the economy is nearing the end of its expansion phase has important implications for investors. We take a look at the data on “late cycle” indicators to see what they really tell us.

Chief Investment Quarterly

Not Expecting to Hit Your Expected Return? Cash Is the Culprit

Today’s lower return targets for pension plans are actually harder to reach. Here’s why.

Macro Wrap-Up

All That Glitters

Silver once ruled the world of markets. Now it can rally by 25%, and no one seems to care. Well, we care! Silver remains one of the most compelling and elusive commodities for investors. This week we look at why it has rallied and what that tells us about investor sentiment in other markets.

Macro Wrap-Up

Cut It Out

What is the greatest trick the Fed ever pulled? Convincing the world it doesn’t matter to markets for the next few months. This week we look at how the Fed tried to take some of the attention away from monetary policy at the last meeting.

Macro Wrap-Up

Credit Checkup

Corporate bonds have rallied this year, but what that means for the economy is not so simple. We look at different interpretations of the credit rally and how it relates to moves in the equity markets. It’s nice to give credit where credit is due.

Macro Wrap-Up

Who is the MVP of the Market (Most Valued Performer)?

This week we give you a recap of the major moves in macro markets so far this year. In order to make it more topical, we compare each of these markets to NBA playoff teams. We find that much of the teams’ performance can be explained by market beta.

Macro Wrap-Up

Non-Essential Oil

Do market prices follow grand economic theories, or is it the other way around? This week we look at how long-term views on oil have been almost as volatile as futures in that commodity.

Macro Wrap-Up

At Any Rate

This week we look at negative rates from a different perspective. Rather than evaluate their effectiveness as a policy tool or their economic impact, we try to answer one question: why would anyone buy a negative yielding bond?

Macro Wrap-Up

Deficitly Maybe

Deficit spending during times of low unemployment is like getting a stationary bike from your government as a gift. Initially it makes you nervous, but you find it slowly starts to boost economic growth. You don't realize how much it changes markets. It's not clear yet if investors should thank the government.

Macro Wrap-Up

2020 Vision

Forecasters are easy targets. You can always find something they got wrong. Yet people still place enormous weight on their predictions, perhaps setting themselves up for disappointment. This week we look at last year’s forecasts on the economy and markets and how they’ve changed coming into the New Year. We also consider how investors should think about forecasts in building their portfolios. Hint: it’s not to assume they’ll always be right.