Beyond Bulls & Bears

State and Local Governments Get Shot of Stimulus
Fixed Income

State and Local Governments Get Shot of Stimulus

Another round of stimulus totaling $1.9 trillion is making its way through the US economy, with hopes it will trigger a sharp rebound from the ravages of COVID-19. The relief package includes funds for individual state and local governments, which should help shore up some lost tax revenues and close budget gaps. Jennifer Johnston discusses the implications for municipal bond investors, noting that where these entities direct the funds will be crucial.

Secular Tailwinds Prevail Across Market Cycles
Equity

Secular Tailwinds Prevail Across Market Cycles

With global equities trading near record highs, many investors are questioning the potential for continued gains going forward. Franklin Equity Group's Matt Moberg believes we are still experiencing a rich backdrop to invest in innovation as many discrete advancements are becoming economically viable in the economy today. 

PODCAST: Pandemic Lessons Learned: ESG Strategies for a Sustainable Recovery
Perspectives

PODCAST: Pandemic Lessons Learned: ESG Strategies for a Sustainable Recovery

Our latest "Talking Markets" podcast examines post-pandemic shifts in priorities and behaviors for companies and investors using environmental, social, and corporate governance strategies.

K2 Advisors Second Quarter Hedge-Fund Strategy Outlook
Alternatives

K2 Advisors Second Quarter Hedge-Fund Strategy Outlook

With a broad-based economic reopening coming closer into focus, investors are planning for the next stage in the cycle. Our K2 Advisors team believes geographical, asset class and sector rotations will be key to driving returns over the next 12 months. Brooks Ritchey and Robert Christian provide the team’s second quarter hedge-fund strategy outlook.

Time for Social Security’s Shot in the Arm
Perspectives

Time for Social Security’s Shot in the Arm

The COVID-19 pandemic has been devastating for individuals and economies around the world. Gail Buckner, our personal retirement and financial planning strategist, shares her thoughts on how the pandemic has affected a key source of income for many elderly Americans—Social Security—and why it’s time to take action to shore up the program.

Single-Country Allocation: Viewing the Opportunity Through Three Lenses
LibertyShares

Single-Country Allocation: Viewing the Opportunity Through Three Lenses

The case for disaggregating international exposure by allocating to single countries remains strong, according to Dina Ting, Head of Global Index Portfolio Management, Franklin Templeton Exchange-Traded Funds. She outlines three investment lenses that shape her team’s views.

High Yield in View: Automobiles and Semiconductors
Fixed Income

High Yield in View: Automobiles and Semiconductors

COVID-19 caused ripple effects throughout many industries and sectors, including automobiles. An already-challenging lockdown environment that forced vehicle production shutdowns also saw shortages of parts—namely semiconductors—which continue to linger. Franklin Templeton Fixed Income Analyst Aleck Beach outlines the implications for investors.

Asia at the Forefront: The World’s Uneven Emergence from COVID-19
Fixed Income

Asia at the Forefront: The World’s Uneven Emergence from COVID-19

There is significant variation in how countries have handled the pandemic, managed fiscal and monetary policy, and supported their economies, according to Templeton Global Macro. While the euro area and the US contend with deepening fiscal deficits and excessive monetary accommodation, areas of Asia are in stronger fiscal shape, with greater growth potential, robust trade dynamics and current account surpluses.

Come Together: Why Merger Arbitrage Strategies Deserve Renewed Attention
Equity

Come Together: Why Merger Arbitrage Strategies Deserve Renewed Attention

Despite historically high market valuations, merger and acquisition activity remains subdued. Franklin Mutual Series CIO Christian Correa explains why corporate mergers have slowed, and why he thinks merger arbitrage strategies are worth paying attention to as activity in this area picks up.

On My Mind – Inflation: The Devil We Knew
Fixed Income

On My Mind – Inflation: The Devil We Knew

Our Fixed Income CIO Sonal Desai has been ahead of the curve in flagging the risks of inflation and rising rates that have now entered the mainstream debate. In this article, she assesses the coming together of an unprecedented fiscal stimulus, a very accommodative US Federal Reserve, and an economy poised to rebound as vaccination campaigns pave the way for reopening businesses. She cautions that central bankers might be underestimating how difficult it will be to deal with the “devil they knew”—inflation—especially if inflation expectations become unmoored; and, she highlights the key fixed income investment implications.

PODCAST: Putting Inflation Concerns in Perspective
Perspectives

PODCAST: Putting Inflation Concerns in Perspective

In our latest "Talking Markets" podcast, Franklin Templeton’s Chief Market Strategist, Stephen Dover, speaks with our Gene Podkaminer, Western Asset’s Mark Lindbloom, and ClearBridge Investments’ Michael Clarfeld about interest rates, deficits, inflation concerns, commodity prices, rising US Treasury yields, and the global rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine.

COVID 19 Disrupts Municipalities—Will Taxing Millionaires Accelerate Outmigration?
Fixed Income

COVID 19 Disrupts Municipalities—Will Taxing Millionaires Accelerate Outmigration?

Apart from some high-profile downgrades, the muni credit markets finished 2020 buoyed by breakthrough vaccines and signs that state and local tax collections were better than anticipated. That said, many governors still face tough choices when it comes to budget shortfalls: they must either raise revenues, cut spending, or both. Our Director of Municipal Bonds, Ben Barber, and Director of Municipal Bond Research, Jennifer Johnston, explain why tax revenues have rallied unexpectedly for California, and explore if working remotely will accelerate outmigration from New York City.