Insights / Blogs

Insights / Blog

Diverse views influence the investment decisions we make. Here, my colleagues and I share those perspectives to help you navigate global market and economic developments.

James Swanson
Chief Investment Strategist
Why I Blog | About Me

May 20, 2016

This Week in Review: Fed Lays Groundwork for Summer Rate Hike

 
For the week ended 20 May 2016

  • FOMC minutes: Most participants said June rate hike would be appropriate if US economy continues to improve
  • US consumer prices, industrial production strengthened in April
  • Japan Q1 GDP grew faster than forecast, with caveats
  • IMF proposes Greek debt relief plan
  • US Treasury and House Republicans strike tentative deal to ease Puerto Rico debt crisis
Global equities were nearly unchanged on the week as the market grappled with the possibility of a rate hike from the US Federal Reserve in the coming months. The Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index (VIX) rose to 16.08 from 14.23 a week ago, while the yield on the 10-year US Treasury note increased to 1.86% from 1.75%. West Texas Intermediate crude prices rose to $48.30 from $46.31 last week, and global Brent crude prices rose to $48.96 from $47.65.
 

May 19, 2016

Missing the Target?


by Ryan Mullen, MFS Senior Managing Director, Head of Defined Contribution Investments

With the popularity of target date funds swelling assets to more than $763 billion at the end of 2015(i), defined contribution plan sponsors now have a sea of choices. But many are still trying to navigate the target date fund landscape based on common myths, which could steer them off course from their participants' best interests. It's time to dispel the myths and get back to what we think matters most based on participant time horizons and risk profile – asset allocation and robust risk management.

May 13, 2016

This Week in Review: A Few Rays of Sunshine Part the Clouds



For the week ended 13 May 2016

  • US April retail sales rise a better-than-expected 1.3%
  • Q1 German GDP grew 0.7%, more than doubling Q4 pace
  • Eurozone finance ministers discuss Greek debt relief
  • Rousseff suspended by Brazilian Senate after impeachment
  • Institutions warn against Brexit

Global equities edged modestly higher on the week. The Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index (VIX) fell to 14.23 from 15.6 a week ago, while the yield on the 10-year US Treasury note declined to 1.75% from 1.76%. West Texas Intermediate crude prices rose to $46.31 from $44.35 last week, and global Brent crude prices rose to $47.65 from $45.03.

May 09, 2016

Mind the Flashing Caution Light




Higher profit margins and abundant free cash flow has propelled the market for much of this business cycle but now we've had three quarters of negative S&P 500 earnings in a row and the weakness is spreading beyond the energy and materials sectors. This is alarming.

Recorded 5 May 2016.

For more market commentary from MFS, visit our YouTube channel. No forecasts can be guaranteed. 

The views expressed are those of James Swanson and are subject to change at any time. These views are for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as a recommendation or solicitation or as investment advice from the Advisor.

This content is directed at investment professionals only.

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May 06, 2016

This Week in Review: US Employment Report Disappoints



For the week ended 6 May 2016
  • US adds weaker-than-expected 160,000 nonfarm jobs  in April
  • Canadian wildfires crimp crude production
  • Puerto Rico defaults on muni bond payments
  • Labour's Khan elected London mayor
  • Global growth remains anemic

Global equities fell this week amid lingering signs of sluggish global economic growth. The Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index (VIX) fell on the week to 15.6 from 16.26, while the yield on the 10-year US Treasury note declined to 1.76% from 1.85%. West Texas Intermediate crude prices dropped to $44.35 from $46.22 a week ago, and global Brent crude prices fell to $45.03 from $48.11.