The Take
on what the market gives us…

Cheers to 35 Years!
By: Bill O'Malley — June 14, 2022

As we celebrate our 35th birthday here at IR+M, it’s interesting to look back at the year of our birth, 1987.  The Celtics lost to the Lakers, Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)” won a Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance and Top Gun won an Oscar for Best Music (Original Song).  The Dow dropped 22.6% in a single day (Black Monday, October 19), Drexel Burnham Lambert and the high yield market began to show cracks and Wall Street premiered with Gordon Gekko proclaiming that “greed…is good.”
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Ten Thoughts on Heavy Seas Investing Along the Curve
By: Jake Remley — May 18, 2022

Any seaman will tell you that weather forecasting is not an exact science. They’ll also joke that “gentlemen do not go windward." But extending this analogy to bond investors preferring to sit in cash amidst a Fed hiking cycle is misguided. Sure, beating windward into the Fed’s heavy seas can be wet, rough, and sloppy. But today’s racing yachts are designed to perform best in the windward direction, as that is often where the race is won. Bond investors who continue to buy high-quality paper during a Fed hiking cycle can be rewarded for their tactical skills. They’ll also be the ones fully invested when that sudden and pronounced change in market wind direction fills the sails of long-term returns.
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Live. Learn. Hedge well.
By: Theresa Roy — May 10, 2022

Rather than relying on timing, making and sticking to a plan can lead to better success in getting on your bike, and more importantly, de-risking your pension.
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Is It Time Yet?
By: Ed Ingalls — April 25, 2022

Markets are resilient. Many periods of significant drawdown create attractive buying opportunities. There is often an overshoot, and prices can recover quickly. We are not predicting what rates will do, nor how Ukraine, inflation, or recession will play out, but it seems like the market has digested and discounted a fair amount of the potential economic fallout. For investors looking to add some yield to their portfolios at much better levels than anytime over the past 3+ years, it may make sense to begin to average in.
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Taxable Munis: Not Exactly a Backwater…
By: Ed Ingalls — April 25, 2022

Taxable munis are an easily overlooked sector of the bond market, whether due to lack of knowledge of the issuers, structure, or fear of illiquidity. A strategic allocation may make sense for those investors looking for a high quality diversifier with a reasonably attractive yield and low volatility.
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Can We Be Optimistic About Climate Change?
By: Allison Walsh — April 21, 2022

I tend to think of myself as a “glass half full” type of person. But, if I’m being honest, much of the reading I do on a daily basis gets pretty depressing. It would be easy to feel down about the impacts of climate change, the lack of urgency to enact change on a global level, and the severe imbalance of those most affected. The most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Assessment Reports don’t offer much room for hope either. But can we be optimistic about climate change?
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Three Myths of Rising Rates
By: Jake Remley — April 13, 2022

It feels like one of those years – it's only April, and we’ve already been through a full cycle of volatility.   And the outlook doesn’t get better. It's hard to say where markets may be in a month, never mind six months. This type of environment can fuel hearsay, innuendos, and old myths in fixed income. But myths are filled with embellishments and separating fact from fiction is critical in fast-moving markets.
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The Silver Linings Playbook
By: Amy DiMarzio — April 6, 2022

In this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes… and the probable outperformance of municipal bonds in a rising rate environment.
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The Fixed Income Investor’s Guide to Building Your Bracket
By: Dan Comiskey — March 23, 2022

The NCAA March Madness tournament has begun. Sixty-eight colleges are playing for the national title over the next month in a single-elimination basketball tournament. As with college basketball, we think having an efficient defense resonates with our clients and how we strive to manage bond portfolios. An efficient defense allows us to transition quickly and efficiently to offense when the market environment shifts.
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Bonding for 35 Years
By: John Sommers & Jack Sommers — March 16, 2022

Today is IR+M’s 35th.  Seems like yesterday when the two of us were in suits and ties in shared office space, talking on phones while figuring out yields on a Monroe bond calculator, and trying to picture our portfolio positioning by taping together Lotus 123 worksheets from a daisy wheel printer……
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