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Thomas Verbraken

Thomas Verbraken
Executive Director, MSCI Research

About the Contributor

Thomas Verbraken is a member of MSCI’s Risk Management Solutions research team. His work focuses on risk methodologies, as well as the evolution of banking regulation and stress testing. Thomas holds an MSc in Civil Engineering and a PhD in Applied Economics from KU Leuven. He is a CFA charterholder.

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Blog posts by Thomas Verbraken

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  1. BLOG

    Stress Testing Inflation Scenarios 

    Sep 24, 2020 Thomas Verbraken , Daniel Szabo

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    Market-implied expectations indicate modest inflation. But some observers are concerned inflation may significantly rise, while others fear deflation. We discuss four inflation scenarios — and their potential implications for stocks and bonds.

  2. BLOG

    Four COVID-19 Scenarios: What Might Happen Next? 

    May 21, 2020 Thomas Verbraken , Juan Sampieri

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    Our latest COVID-19 stress test looks at four potential financial-market outcomes ranging from a swift V-shaped recovery to a pessimistic L-shaped scenario, in which outbreaks recur and lockdowns return well into 2021.

  3. BLOG

    How could coronavirus impact credit markets? 

    Mar 25, 2020 Juan Sampieri , Andy Sparks , Thomas Verbraken

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    While newspaper headlines are focused on volatile stock markets stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, credit markets are not immune. Our latest stress test asks, “What would it mean for portfolios if losses reached 2008 levels?”

  4. BLOG

    A coronavirus stress test for global markets 

    Mar 4, 2020 Thomas Verbraken , Chenlu Zhou , Juan Sampieri

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    After the coronavirus spread to multiple continents, markets recorded the worst week since the crisis. How much further could markets drop if epidemic turns into pandemic? Our stress test indicates room for further losses.

  5. BLOG

    The coronavirus epidemic: Implications for markets 

    Feb 12, 2020 Zhen Wei , Jun Wang , Thomas Verbraken

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    The toll from the coronavirus has been felt throughout societies, leading to repercussions on the global economy and financial markets. We examine investor impact through markets’ economic exposures to China and factors and by stress testing portfolios.

  6. BLOG

    Stress testing US-China trade wars 

    Oct 22, 2019 Thomas Verbraken , Anikó Maráz

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    Amid ongoing U.S.-China trade tension, we have updated our stress test to consider three scenarios for how the situation could unfold — and their impact on currency, bond and equity markets around the world.

  7. BLOG

    Stress testing Brexit: Deal or no deal? 

    Oct 9, 2019 Anikó Maráz , Thomas Verbraken

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    Brexit has roiled markets since U.K. voters chose “leave” in the June 2016 referendum. We used our stress-testing model to examine how markets could react to deal and no-deal scenarios.

  8. BLOG

    Three scenarios for Fed rate cuts 

    Jul 23, 2019 Andy Sparks , Thomas Verbraken

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    A consensus has emerged that the Federal Reserve will lower rates in the coming months, but investors remain uncertain over the timing and magnitude of the cuts. What impact could three rate-cut scenarios have on markets?

  9. BLOG

    What could stress emerging markets? 

    May 24, 2019 Thomas Verbraken

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    Emerging-market equities and USD-denominated EM sovereign bonds started 2019 with a bang, but recent market turbulence caused by the U.S.-China trade standoff raises a pressing question: What could trigger the next EM downturn?

  10. BLOG

    The risk in risk-parity strategies 

    Mar 13, 2019 Thomas Verbraken

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    The relationship between bonds and equities may be especially important to investors who employ a risk-parity approach. In our analysis, as the bond-equity correlation turned strongly positive, the effect on risk-parity portfolios was much greater than that on traditional 60/40 equity/bond portfolios.

  11. BLOG

    What would a “No deal” Brexit mean for markets? 

    Jan 17, 2019 Thomas Verbraken

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    Financial markets are increasingly edgy about prospects for the U.K. Parliament’s expected Dec. 11 vote on a Brexit deal with the European Union.

  12. BLOG

    Is the bond-equity hedge slipping away? 

    Nov 1, 2018 Michael Hayes , Thomas Verbraken

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    In October, the 10-year U.S. Treasury yield hit a 7-year high in response to strong economic news, contributing to the second major equity sell-off this year.1 If positive moves in yield continue to drive down equities, this would mean an end to the hedge between stocks and bonds that has been in effect since around 2002. Investors may seek alternative means of diversification, with potentially deep ramifications for strategic asset allocation decisions and multi-asset class strategies.

  13. BLOG

    Are Argentina and Turkey just the first dominoes to fall? 

    Oct 17, 2018 Limin Xiao , Thomas Verbraken

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    Argentina and Turkey have experienced sharp corrections in their currency and debt markets over the past couple of months, leading investors to worry about possible contagion to other emerging-market (EM) countries. Are other emerging markets heading in the same direction?

  14. BLOG

    What happens if Italy leaves the EU? 

    Aug 6, 2018 Thomas Verbraken

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    With populist policies on the rise, globally, many believe Italy’s coalition government could add to the EU’s challenges by pursuing populist strategies that could further disrupt both equity and bond markets. We consider two scenarios – a severe and mild one – with very different implications.

  15. BLOG

    What if the U.S.-China trade war escalates? 

    Apr 13, 2018 Thomas Verbraken , András Urbán

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    Markets appear to have priced in the recent tariffs, but the risk of a broader trade war still looms. Market scenarios based on economic studies suggest an all-out trade war could drive global equity prices down another 10%, with U.S. investors receiving the worst of it.

  16. BLOG

    If Frexit Follows Brexit 

    Apr 20, 2017 Thomas Verbraken

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    France’s April 23 presidential election looms as the next important test for the future of the European Union and its common currency, the euro. The questions for institutional investors: What is the risk of France quitting the eurozone and what are the implications for their portfolios?

  17. BLOG

    Breaking up is hard to do: Brexit and institutional portfolios 

    Mar 15, 2017 Thomas Verbraken

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    The United Kingdom is about to begin negotiations over its exit from the European Union. Though the process could take up to two years, the triggering of talks leaves institutional investors to assess how Brexit, at least at the outset of negotiations, may affect their portfolios.

  18. BLOG

    How Brexit may impact your portfolio 

    Mar 21, 2016 Thomas Verbraken

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    Britain’s leaving the European Union would send the U.K. and Europe into the unknown with possibly major consequences for multi-asset class portfolios.

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