The U.S. Federal Reserve’s fight against inflation through increases in the Fed Funds rate and quantitative tightening has led to the worst year on record for the U.S. fixed income markets (as measured by Bloomberg U.S. Aggregate Bond Index performance of -15.7% year-to-date through October 31, 2022). This environment, when combined with the potential for additional rate hikes, has resulted in significant losses to fixed income portfolios.
The lockdowns and flash recession which followed the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic precipitated a reset of the global economy and initiated a new business cycle. Recent stock market weakness, however, is a cyclical correction in a secular bull market, and we believe the U.S. remains early in the recovery phase of this new cycle.
In January 2021, Palisade Capital Management published a research piece entitled “The Time For Convertibles Is (Still) Now”, where we outlined the advantages of investing in the convertible asset class, both historically and tactically, given an impending, post COVID-19 economic cycle.
In this study, we seek to touch upon and update key aspects of Palisade's unique approach to investing in convertibles. Palisade's convertible strategies emphasize Growth convertibles (as opposed to Value convertibles) and Large- and Mid-Capitalization convertibles (rather than Small-Capitalization convertibles).
We believe 2021 will be another favorable year for convertibles and remain a compelling asset class, especially for those that have re-examined their allocation framework and appetite for risk given the rollercoaster ride of 2020.
We believe convertible securities, which complement other alpha-seeking strategies within a portfolio, have always been an attractive asset class and should play a vital role in strategic allocations during these unprecedented times.
The first issue of Palisade's new Deep Dive Series explores small-cap banks. The banking industry is at the heart of the American economy, and small-cap banks are at the intersection of Wall Street and Main Street.
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