Bonds: Busting Five Myths about the Fed, Rates, and Liquidity
A Note about Risk: The value of investments in equity securities will fluctuate in response to general economic conditions and to changes in the prospects of particular companies and/or sectors in the economy. The value of investments in fixed-income securities will change as interest rates fluctuate. As interest rates fall, the prices of debt securities tend to rise, and as interest rates rise, the prices of debt securities tend to fall. Investments in high-yield securities (sometimes called junk bonds) carry increased risks of price volatility, illiquidity, and the possibility of default in the timely payment of interest and principal. Bonds may also be subject to other types of risk, such as call, credit, liquidity, interest-rate, and general market risks. Moreover, the specific collateral used to secure a loan may decline in value or become illiquid, which would adversely affect the loan’s value. Longer-term debt securities are usually more sensitive to interest-rate changes; the longer the maturity of a security, the greater the effect a change in interest rates is likely to have on its price. Convertible securities have both equity and fixed-income risk characteristics. Like all fixed-income securities, the value of convertible securities is susceptible to the risk of market losses attributable to changes in interest rates. Generally, the market value of convertible securities tends to decline as interest rates increase and, conversely, to increase as interest rates decline. No investing strategy can overcome all market volatility or guarantee future results.
Treasuries are debt securities issued by the U.S. government and secured by its full faith and credit. Income from Treasury securities is exempt from state and local taxes.
Forecasts and projections are based on current market conditions and are subject to change without notice. Projections should not be considered a guarantee.
Statements concerning financial market trends are based on current market conditions, which will fluctuate. There is no guarantee that markets will perform in a similar manner under similar conditions in the future.
Duration is a measure of the sensitivity of the price (the value of principal) of a fixed-income investment to a change in interest rates. Duration is expressed as a number of years.
Yield to maturity is the return an investor can expect to earn on a bond if the bond is held until it matures, assuming that all coupon payments are invested at a rate equal to the bond's current yield. Yield to maturity is usually expressed as an annual percentage rate.
One basis point equals 0.01%.
Charts− Economic Data – Index Information
The Citigroup 10-Year Treasury Bond Index is a broad measure of the performance of the medium-term U.S. Treasury securities.
The Barclays U.S. Aggregate Bond Index is an unmanaged index composed of securities from the Barclays Government/Corporate Bond Index, Mortgage-Backed Securities Index and the Asset-Backed Securities Index. Total return comprises price appreciation/depreciation and income as a percentage of the original investment. Indexes are rebalanced monthly by market capitalization.
The BofA Merrill Lynch 1–3 year BBB-Rated U.S. Corporate Index is an unmanaged index composed of U.S. dollar-denominated investment-grade corporate debt securities publicly issued in the U.S. domestic market with between one and three years remaining to final maturity and a rating of 'BBB.'
The BofA Merrill Lynch High Yield US Master II Constrained Index is a market value-weighted index of all domestic and Yankee high-yield bonds, including deferred interest bonds and payment-in-kind securities. Issues included in the index have maturities of one year or more and have a credit rating lower than BB-/Baa3, but are not in default. The BofA Merrill Lynch U.S. High Yield Master II Constrained Index limits any individual issuer to a maximum of 2% benchmark exposure.
The Bloomberg Generic Inflation Indexed U.S. 10-Year Government Security Index tracks rates that are comprised of generic U.S. government inflation-index bonds.
The Credit Suisse Leveraged Loan Index is designed to mirror the investable universe of the U.S. dollar-denominated leveraged loan market. The CS Leveraged Loan Index is an unmanaged, trader-priced index that tracks leveraged loans. The CS Leveraged Loan Index, which includes reinvested dividends, has been taken from published sources.
The BofA Merrill Lynch All Convertibles, All Qualities Index contains issues that have a greater than $50 million aggregate market value. The issues are U.S. dollar-denominated, sold into the U.S. market and publicly traded in the United States.
The S&P 500® Index is widely regarded as the standard for measuring large cap U.S. stock market performance and includes a representative sample of leading companies in leading industries.
Indexes are unmanaged, do not reflect the deduction of fees or expenses, and are not available for direct investment.
The credit quality ratings of the securities in a portfolio are assigned by a nationally recognized statistical rating organization (NRSRO), such as Standard & Poor’s, Moody’s, or Fitch, as an indication of an issuer’s creditworthiness. Ratings range from ‘AAA’ (highest) to ‘D’ (lowest). Bonds rated ‘BBB’ or above are considered investment grade. Credit ratings ‘BB’ and below are lower-rated securities (junk bonds). High-yielding, non-investment-grade bonds (junk bonds) involve higher risks than investment-grade bonds. Adverse conditions may affect the issuer’s ability to pay interest and principal on these securities. Credit quality distributions breakdown is not a Standard & Poor’s credit rating or an opinion of Standard & Poor’s as to the creditworthiness of the portfolio.
The opinions in the preceding commentary are as of the date of publication and subject to change based on subsequent developments and may not reflect the views of the firm as a whole. This material is not intended to be legal or tax advice and is not to be relied upon as a forecast, or research or investment advice regarding a particular investment or the markets in general, nor is it intended to predict or depict performance of any investment. Investors should not assume that investments in the securities and/or sectors described were or will be profitable. This document is prepared based on information Lord Abbett deems reliable; however, Lord Abbett does not warrant the accuracy or completeness of the information. Investors should consult with a financial advisor prior to making an investment decision.