“We prefer high yielding bonds where higher income can provide a cushion against rising interest rates and heightened uncertainty. High yield credit offers an interesting opportunity given the recent widening of credit spreads.”
- Vasu Menon, Senior Investment Strategist, Wealth Management Singapore, OCBC Bank
- Stronger growth brings the prospect of monetary policy tightening. This is most apparent in the U.S. where we think the Fed is set to raise interest rates six more times by the end of 2018. However, it also applies to China, which is trying to cool down the housing market, and even to Europe and Japan which are likely to be signalling a shift in monetary policy before the end of 2017. In a year’s time G3 monetary policy will still be very loose, but the lengthy era of zero interest rates and abundant liquidity is slowly drawing to a close.
- There is the risk that an aggressive tax reform programme by the Trump administration may intensify concerns about overheating and drives the Fed to be more hawkish. However, the current political timetable implies that this is more likely to be an issue for 2018 rather than this year, and it is unclear whether tax reform will provide a significant fiscal boost. The collapse of healthcare reform suggests that the fiscal conservatives in the Republican Party could block policies that increase the budget deficit.
- Despite the prospects for higher interest rates we continue to be positive on high yield bonds. Bonds as an asset class arguably benefits more directly from strong underlying growth than equities. Equity markets have high growth expectations to live up to; bonds only have to remain creditworthy. That is much less of a challenge in a benign economic environment.
- Valuations on both high yield and investment grade bonds currently are rich by historical standards. However in a reflationary environment with higher rates, we believe that income from coupons will become an increasingly important component of total return. With its higher corporate spread component, high yield bonds should be somewhat better insulated from the adverse impact of higher rates. Furthermore, high yield bonds are better positioned to benefit from a decline in overall default rates in 2017 versus 2016.
- Finally, we reiterate three key things to bear in mind when investing in bond markets to reduce risk. Firstly, given the potential for higher U.S. interest rates, investors should focus on bonds with a shorter tenor (preferably five years or less) as such bonds are less affected by higher interest rates compared with longer dated bonds. Secondly, consider investing in a portfolio of bonds through a unit trust rather than buying individual bonds as many individual bonds require a significant investment outlay and can expose investors to concentration risk. Finally, it is absolutely imperative to buy only into quality bonds with decent credit fundamentals to reduce default risk.
The information provided herein is intended for general circulation and/or discussion purposes only. It does not take into account the specific investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs of any particular person. Before you make any investment decision, please seek advice from your OCBC Relationship Manager regarding the suitability of any investment product taking into account your specific investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs. In the event that you choose not to seek advice from your OCBC Relationship Manager, you should carefully consider whether the product is suitable for you. This does not constitute an offer or solicitation to buy or sell or subscribe for any security or financial instrument or to enter into any transaction or to participate in any particular trading or investment strategy.
OCBC Bank, its related companies, their respective directors and/or employees (collectively ‘Related Persons’) may have positions in, and may effect transaction in the products mentioned herein. OCBC Bank may have alliances with the product providers, for which OCBC Bank may receive a fee. Product providers may also be Related Persons, who may be receiving fees from investors. OCBC Bank and the Related Person may also perform or seek to perform broking and other financial services for the product providers.
No representation or warranty whatsoever (including without limitation any representation or warranty as to accuracy, usefulness, adequacy, timeliness or completeness) in respect of any information (including without limitation any statement, figures, opinion, view or estimate) provided herein is given by OCBC Bank and it should not be relied upon as such. OCBC Bank does not undertake an obligation to update the information or to correct any inaccuracy that may become apparent at a later time. All information presented is subject to change without notice. OCBC Bank shall not be responsible or liable for any loss or damage whatsoever arising directly or indirectly howsoever in connection with or as a result of any person acting on any information provided herein. The information provided herein may contain projections or other forward-looking statements regarding future events or future performance of countries, assets, markets or companies. Actual events or results may differ materially. Past performance figures are not necessarily indicative of future or likely performance. Any reference to any specific company, financial product or asset class in whatever way is used for illustrative purposes only and does not constitute a recommendation on the same.
The contents hereof may not be reproduced or disseminated in whole or in part without OCBC Bank’s written consent.
The information in this document is not intended to constitute research analysis or recommendation and should not be treated as such.Cross-Border Marketing Disclaimer
1. Indonesia: The offering of the investment product in reliance of this document is not registered under the Indonesian Capital Market Law and its implementing regulations, and is not intended to constitute a public offering of securities under the Indonesian Capital Market Law and its implementing regulations. The investment product may not be offered or sold, directly or indirectly, within Indonesia or to citizens (wherever they are domiciled or located), entities or residents, in any manner which constitutes a public offering of securities under the Indonesian Capital Market Law and its implementing regulations.
2. Malaysia: Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation Limited (“OCBC Bank”) does not hold any licence, registration or approval to carry on any regulated business in Malaysia (including but not limited to any businesses regulated under the Capital Markets & Services Act 2007 of Malaysia), nor does it hold itself out as carrying on or purport to carry on any such business in Malaysia. Any services provided by OCBC Bank to residents of Malaysia are provided solely on an offshore basis from outside Malaysia, either as a result of “reverse enquiry” on the part of the Malaysian residents or where OCBC Bank has been retained outside Malaysia to provide such services. As an integral part of the provision of such services from outside Malaysia, OCBC Bank may from time to time make available to such residents documents and information making reference to capital markets products (for example, in connection with the provision of fund management or investment advisory services outside of Malaysia). Nothing in such documents or information is intended to be construed as or constitute the making available of, or an offer or invitation to subscribe for or purchase any such capital markets product.
3. Myanmar: OCBC Bank does not hold any licence or registration under the FIML or other Myanmar legislation to carry on, nor do they purport to carry on, any regulated activity in Myanmar. All activities relating to the client are conducted strictly on an offshore basis. The customers shall ensure that it is their responsibility to comply with all applicable local laws before entering into discussion or contracts with the Bank.
4. Taiwan: The provision of the information and the offer of the service concerned herewith have not been and will not be registered with the Financial Supervisory Commission of Taiwan pursuant to relevant laws and regulations of Taiwan and may not be provided or offered in Taiwan or in circumstances which requires a prior registration or approval of the Financial Supervisory Commission of Taiwan. No person or entity in Taiwan has been authorised to provide the information and to offer the service in Taiwan.
5. Thailand: Please note that OCBC Bank does not maintain any licences, authorisations or registrations in Thailand nor is any of the material and information contained, or the relevant securities or products specified herein approved or registered in Thailand. Interests in the relevant securities or products may not be offered or sold within Thailand. The attached information has been provided at your request for informational purposes only and shall not be copied or redistributed to any other person without the prior consent of OCBC Bank or its relevant entities and in no way constitutes an offer, solicitation, advertisement or advice of, or in relation to, the relevant securities or products by OCBC Bank or any other entities in OCBC Bank’s group in Thailand.
6. Hong Kong SAR: This document is for information only and is not intended for anyone other than the recipient. It has not been reviewed by any regulatory authority in Hong Kong. It is not an offer or a solicitation to deal in any of the financial products referred to herein or to enter into any legal relations, nor an advice or a recommendation with respect to such financial products. It does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and the particular needs of any recipient or Investor. This document may not be published, circulated, reproduced or distributed in whole or in part to any other person without OCBC Bank’s prior written consent. This document is not intended for distribution to, publication or use by any person in any jurisdiction outside Hong Kong, or such other jurisdiction as the Bank may determine in its absolute discretion, where such distribution, publication or use would be contrary to applicable law or would subject the Bank and its related corporations, connected persons, associated persons and/or affiliates to any registration, licensing or other requirements within such jurisdiction.
© Copyright 2016 - OCBC Bank | All Rights Reserved.