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emerging markets

State-owned corporate bonds: there is no such thing as an implicit guarantee

A couple of weeks ago, state-owned International Bank of Azerbaijan (IBA) shocked its bondholders by announcing a surprise restructuring. The bank’s capital ratio turned negative at year-end 2016 due to large currency losses as a result of the depreciation of local-currency Manat (AZN). The International Bank of Azerbaijan bonds (IBAZAZ) 5.625% 2019 bonds were trading above par and dropped by 1…

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Czech out: Thoughts on the removal of the currency cap

The Czech National Bank (CNB) has removed its cap against the Euro, which I blogged about earlier this year. Though the signs had been pointing to an early removal (headline inflation had been within the target range since October last year and the CNB had hardened its signalling language), the timing of yesterday’s move at the central bank’s extraordinary meeting did come as a surprise. Curren…

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Research trip: Mexico & Trump – a key call in emerging markets

President Trump’s anti-Mexico rhetoric has made Mexican assets one of the key calls in emerging market debt. I have just returned from a research trip to Mexico where I met with local economists, analysts, and corporate bond issuers. Below are a number of observations from my time there.

Donald Trump won the election on a fairly protectionist rhetoric – with a special focus on Mexico – and the …

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China Renminbi: the USD $50,000 question

Last week, in line with expectations, China announced the renewal of the $50,000 limit of dollar purchases by individuals. What’s changed however is that the foreign exchange commission (SAFE) has tightened the scrutiny on the foreign exchange purchases. Applicants are now required to detail the purpose behind their transactions in order to ensure that the purchase is for “suitable purposes” (e…

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Emerging market debt: 2016 post-mortem and 2017 outlook

Despite a year of high political turmoil – which of course included the UK EU referendum and the US elections – emerging market assets proved surprisingly resilient to the various global events, even with rising core government yields in the second half of 2016.  Given that starting valuations at the beginning of the year, both with respect to credit spreads as well as currencies, were pricing …

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A whole new ball game. M&G 2017 economic and bond market outlook.

In our latest Panoramic Outlook, Jim Leaviss has a look at the forces that resulted in a tumultuous year for establishment politics, the ECB’s quantitative easing dilemma and the prospects for emerging markets in 2017. For the first time since the financial crisis, it appears that bond yields will come under sustained pressure as central banks gradually remove monetary stimulus. The impacts of …

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It’s Halloween. Here are some scary charts.

The financial world is a scary place. Debt, disinflation and deteriorating growth have plagued investors over the past year, plunging bond yields into negative territory in a number of countries. Perhaps most frighteningly, it is now eight years since the financial crisis and central banks in the developed world continue to employ an ultra-easy monetary policy stance. With government bond marke…

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The Central American Remittance Crunch – who would lose most from a Trump Presidency?

The US election campaign has surprised everyone thus far. Candidate Donald Trump has vowed to deport all of the 11 million illegal immigrants currently living in the US. He has also declared that he would impound all remittance payments derived from illegal wages. We have written before how Central America and the Caribbean would benefit from improving US growth and have been invested in variou…

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Emerging Markets debt: 2015 returns post-mortem and 2016 outlook

Following on from Gordon’s review of the best and worst performing fixed income asset classes last year, I wanted to take a more in depth look at how emerging markets performed in 2015 and what to look out for in 2016.

Some themes that drove the market in 2015 were the same themes than drove it in 2014. Once again, asset allocation was critical. Local currency debt, for the third year running, …

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Colombia: At risk of a rating downgrade to BBB-

Part of the ABC of Latin American debt series (see here for views on Argentina and here for Brazil)

During my recent trip to Latin America it was funny (but not surprising) to hear the locals worrying about Colombia becoming the next Brazil. In turn, Brazilians are worried about becoming Argentina (though I believe the Argentinean problems are much more solvable in the near term than Brazil’s) …

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