Convertible contingent securities — known as “CoCo bonds”-- are a popular form of hybrid debt, but they can be hard to value when issuers head into troubled waters. These securities are a form of risky debt (typically issued by European financial institutions) that convert to equity when a predetermined...Read More »
A lot has been written about the persistence of the global small-cap premium. But what, apart from size, distinguishes small-cap stocks from their large- and mid-cap counterparts, and how can these distinctions help institutional investors?Read More »
How are institutional investors tackling climate-change risk in their portfolios? Thanks partly to global initiatives such as the Montreal Pledge and the Portfolio Decarbonization Coalition, both launched in 2014, many institutional investors have moved quickly to understand the long-term portfolio...Read More »
In May, we wrote that despite the generally low market volatility that has prevailed this year, investors were paying relatively high prices for downside protection as measured by “options skew” – the difference in implied volatility between an out-of-the-money option and an at-the-money option. High skew...Read More »
We see a growing number of institutional investors seeking to avoid financial risks associated with environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors, or even to enhance returns by investing in companies that have strong ESG track records. As we wrote in an earlier blog post, these investors are typically...Read More »
Markets have enjoyed a relatively long period of positive returns and low volatility, making some investors wonder if a correction is imminent. One possible trigger for a correction would be investors concluding that market valuations have become extreme, which could lower future returns.Read More »
Aug 15, 2017| Real Estate Investing
It is sometimes assumed that larger real estate assets perform differently to smaller assets thanks to reduced accessibility and competition at the top end of the market. Using MSCI’s global private real estate dataset, we find evidence to support the assertion that the size of an asset does have an impact...Read More »
Aug 2, 2017| Equity Themes
When markets get volatile, stock prices can move very quickly in a short period. As we saw in the August 2007 “quant liquidity crunch”— now about to mark its 10-year anniversary — many quantitative equity managers could have benefitted from getting market insights in real time as they found themselves in...Read More »
Jul 27, 2017| ESG Research
Many of the world’s largest institutional investors are integrating ESG standards into their investment strategies. But they face a challenge: Excluding every objectionable firm or selecting only ESG (environmental, social and governance) leaders can slash the number of acceptable stocks by half while...Read More »
Dec. 09, 2014
Many institutional investors recognize that their reference universe should include large-, mid- and small-cap equities and that smaller companies should earn a risk premium over larger ones. In practice, however, many of these investors - particularly in Europe and Asia - underweight the small-cap segment.
Dec. 02, 2014
While a growing body of research shows that exposure to factors, such as Value, Momentum, Low Size and Low Volatility, has produced positive excess returns, factor investing for large-scale portfolios has not been well studied.
Investors have long debated the benefits of active versus passive investing. There are institutional investors with strong convictions in each camp, but many have become increasingly pragmatic, combining active and passive mandates in pursuit of the best risk-adjusted return.
Nov. 03, 2014
Equity factor investing aims to capture exposures to different equity risk premia. Factor modeling and factor investing are rooted in the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM) dating from the mid-1960s, Arbitrage Pricing Theory from the 1970s and Fama and French’s three-factor model from the 1990s.
Nov. 03, 2014
Factor indexes historically have generated premia in developed markets. Now, as global markets have become more correlated, investors are starting to seek additional sources of returns within emerging markets.
March and April of this year saw one of the worst periods of active performance over the past 10 years for actively managed portfolios. And this happened, despite a flat stock market and historically low volatility levels.
Institutional investors are trying to better understand how their portfolios benchmarked to factor indexes may behave in different economic regimes. In previous posts, we tried to answer the question: "I think economic activity/inflation is going to increase/decrease over the near term...
Apr. 11, 2014
Institutional investors have historically been concerned over the changing state of the economy and its impact on their investments whether it was about "Abenomics" or "taper tantrums." As a result, we are noting that they are increasingly taking changing macroeconomic conditions into consideration for their asset allocations.
We recently extended our simulated index factor history to 40 years, providing a unique set of data compared to others available in the marketplace. This extended history, combined with IndexMetrics, MSCI’s analytical framework, offers investors sharper tools for creating and analyzing portfolios.
Apr. 11, 2014
As we recently said in our post, systematic factors have historically been sensitive to macroeconomic and market forces but not in the same way. For example, some, such as Value, Momentum and Size have been pro-cyclical, meaning they outperformed when economic growth and volatility were rising.
Insights, data and commentary from MSCI Research about global investing, the movement of asset prices, investing for the long term, and risk and return to help investors make better-informed decisions.