Beyond Bulls & Bears

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.

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.

European Fixed Income in 2021: Focused on Recovery, and Politics
Fixed Income

European Fixed Income in 2021: Focused on Recovery, and Politics

While the calendar has turned to a new year, many of the same uncertainties of 2020 still linger—namely the COVID-19 pandemic. However, David Zahn, our Head of European Fixed Income, sees reasons to be optimistic the picture will look brighter for Europe by year-end, and is poised to take advantage of potential opportunities that arise.

Brexit Deal Finally Struck as 2020 Comes to a Close
Fixed Income

Brexit Deal Finally Struck as 2020 Comes to a Close

The United Kingdom and European Union finally put Brexit to bed, striking a deal in the final days of 2020. While the deal may not be perfect for either side, David Zahn, our Head of European Fixed Income, says the markets welcomed the removal of uncertainty.

On My Mind: Better Information Key to Vaccine “V-Day”
Fixed Income

On My Mind: Better Information Key to Vaccine “V-Day”

With a new wave of COVID-19 contagion triggering a new round of economic restrictions across a number of countries, hopes are more than ever focused on the quick release of a vaccine. But the latest pulse of our Franklin Templeton-Gallup Economics of Recovery Study reveals that better public information will be key for a vaccine to deliver a “V-Day” for the pandemic and the recovery. The latest poll also warns to watch out for rising prices. Franklin Templeton Fixed Income CIO Sonal Desai breaks down the latest results.

On My Mind: The Fed’s Final Frontier—Negative Rates or Yield Curve Control?
Fixed Income

On My Mind: The Fed’s Final Frontier—Negative Rates or Yield Curve Control?

Given fears of a COVID-19 resurgence and US election uncertainties looming, many investors are wondering what comes next for policymakers in terms of supporting the economy. Our Fixed Income CIO Sonal Desai weighs in on the possibility of negative US interest rates or other measures.

A Fixed Income View of 2020: Separating Sentiment from Fact
Fixed Income

A Fixed Income View of 2020: Separating Sentiment from Fact

Investors could be in for a bumpy year ahead, according to Franklin Templeton Fixed Income CIO Sonal Desai. She emphasizes the importance of separating the facts from the headlines, but also thinks it’s a good time to look to “de-risk” portfolios to some extent, while still remaining invested.

The Federal Reserve: Dealer’s Choice
Fixed Income

The Federal Reserve: Dealer’s Choice

The US Federal Reserve cut its benchmark short-term interest rate for the first time in 11 years in what Chairman Jerome Powell called a “mid-cycle adjustment” to sustain the US economic expansion. Powell appeared to struggle to reconcile his admission the US economy is strong with this decision, says Franklin Templeton Fixed Income CIO Sonal Desai. She shares her thoughts on the July policy meeting and the potential market implications.

Municipal Bonds: When Full Faith and Credit Falls Flat
Fixed Income

Municipal Bonds: When Full Faith and Credit Falls Flat

Once upon a time, US municipal bonds were generally considered less risky than corporate bonds. Backed by the full faith and credit of state governments, investors had confidence they would receive their principal plus interest without fail. Times have changed. For some states and local governments, decades of financial mismanagement and massive pension liabilities are threatening to upend the full faith and credit pledge. In this article, Franklin Templeton Fixed Income takes a look at the situation, with Illinois being an example of a particularly dire case.

As Public Attitudes Toward the Environment Change, So Should the Investment Approach
Fixed Income

As Public Attitudes Toward the Environment Change, So Should the Investment Approach

“After attending this year’s Principles for Responsible Investment Conference (PRI) in San Francisco, our takeaway message is clear: Investors and investment managers have to be proactive in addressing changing public attitudes toward the environment.” -David Zahn