David Hernandez, CFA
This week’s chart examines the change in yield for global sovereign debt. While we have been in a low interest rate environment since 2008, over the last three years, we have seen negative yielding bonds move from 0% of the developed bond universe to 38%. A staggering number indeed, this has been the by-product of anemic global growth and aggressive monetary policies in Europe and Japan.
One of the consequences of a negative rate environment is increased demand for higher yielding assets. Through the second quarter, U.S. high yield and emerging market debt have returned 9.1% and 10.3%, respectively. In addition to attractive yields, these asset classes have benefitted from stability in commodity prices and minimal exposure to the Brexit event. Should these conditions persist going forward, expect investor preference for credit and higher yielding bonds to continue, given this historically low interest rate environment.
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