The Factor-Based Investing Channel

Balancing the Positives

Blackstone is pleased to offer the following Market Commentary by Byron Wien which shares his thinking on global economic developments, market insights and other factors that may influence investment opportunities and strategies.

The Beginning of the End?

The global expansion is either nearing its demand-driven peak or in the early stages of a supply-driven renaissance. We share our assessment and portfolio positioning.

Can Investors Make Money in a US–China Trade War?

President Trump’s plans for tariffs on about $60 billion of Chinese imports have rattled equity markets. Investors should begin to study which types of industries, countries and companies could win or lose if an all-out trade war erupts.

DOL Fiduciary Rule Still in Limbo After Latest Court Ruling

The US Department of Labor’s (DOL) Fiduciary Rule has been the subject of much debate, and still remains largely in limbo as it works its way through the court system. The rule, which expands the scope of persons deemed to be a fiduciary, was to go into effect in January 2018, but full implementation was delayed.

Diamond Jewelers, Gold Coins and the Paradox of Indian Banking

Many of India’s state-owned banks are in trouble. This month the government is injecting $13 billion to help these banks offload non-performing loans. By 2020, the total cost of injections is projected to rise to $21 billion, about 1.3% of GDP.

S&P 500 Snapshot: Down 3.8% from Last Thursday

This week, the S&P 500 continued to decline with 3 days of losses. The index closed Thursday at its lowest yet of the week and fell 3.77% from this time last week. It is down 1.93% YTD and is 8.0% below its record close.

Killing Each Other

Bill Gross' March 2018 Investment Outlook: A monthly outlook on the global financial markets.

Powell Takes Charge

In his first meeting as Chair of the Federal Reserve, Jerome Powell and company delivered what almost everyone had been expecting, a 25 basis point hike in the federal funds rate, and raised expectations for economic activity in the months and years ahead.

Hawks, Doves and Jays: Takeaways From First Fed Rate Hike Under Jerome "Jay" Powell

With new chair Jerome Powell at the helm, the Fed increased borrowing costs today for the sixth time since the U.S. economic expansion began. Can markets expect continued rate hikes under Powell's watch?

Fed Outlook: Headwinds Shift to Tailwinds, But Pace of Hikes Still Gradual

The U.S. Federal Reserve’s announcement of another 25 basis point hike in the fed funds rate range to 1.5% to 1.75% was widely expected by us and by markets. The more interesting aspect of the March FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) meeting is the change to central bank officials’ forecasts.

Do Your Target-Date Funds Measure Up to Rising Rates?

Rising US interest rates could pose a challenge for target-date funds (TDFs) that concentrate on “core” US fixed-income exposure. Diversifying across a broad range of bond markets and strategies can create a cushion in a rising-rate environment.

Fed Remains in Tightening Mode in March

The US Federal Reserve remained in tightening mode at its March monetary policy meeting, raising its benchmark interest rate for the sixth time since December 2015.

The Fed Has the Direction of Prices Correct, but Could be Undershooting the Magnitude

Today the Fed hiked the Fed Funds rate by .25% and also updated their policy statement and the so called dot plot, which is a compilation of the FOMC members projections’ for GDP growth, unemployment and prices.

For Stocks, What Consumers Say Outweighs What They Do

Russ discusses why stocks can still thrive when consumers are confident, but frugal.

Kansas City Fed Survey: Growth Maintained in March

The latest index came in at 17, unchanged from last month, which indicates that activity expanded in March. The future outlook decreased to 33 from 38 last month. Here is a snapshot of the complete Kansas City Fed Manufacturing Survey.