How has the credit market evolved over the last decade?

One of the major themes we have been talking to investors about recently has been the changes wrought since the onset of the global financial crisis a decade ago. It is often forgotten, for example, that interest rates in the UK stood at 5.50% at the end of 2007, that 10 year UK and Greek government bond yields were nigh on identical and that the Bank of England had a balance sheet of just £77 billion. But what did the sterling corporate bond market look like?

Michael Count

Michael Count

Senior Fund Manager, Fixed Income

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Hybrid corporates: a strong 2017

Outside of ‘vanilla’ fixed income securities – your standard corporate and government bonds – there exists a vast array of options for investors, most of which are little discussed. These range from relatively simple floating rate notes, to exotic products with various convertible or re-set features, which can be triggered in a number of scenarios. One area that has done particularly well in 2017 has been hybrid corporate bonds.

David Arnaud

David Arnaud

Senior Fund Manager, Fixed Income

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Generating a yield uplift

The 9 August 2017 was regarded by many as the 10 year anniversary of the global financial crisis. The European Central Bank (ECB) and the US Federal Reserve (Fed) ploughed c. £45 billion into financial markets that day as the credit crunch began. Astonishingly, the UK base rate on that day stood at 5.75%. Since the 5 March 2009, it has only ever been 0.50% or lower.

Ian Goulsbra

Ian Goulsbra

Sales & Marketing Director, Investments

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A nuanced market

Up until mid-June, UK gilts had performed robustly from a total return perspective in 2017, as 10 year yields edged down from 1.24% at the start of the year to hit 0.93% on the 14 June. This translated into a gain of 2.84% from the FTSE Gilts All Stocks Index over the same period. However, there has been a change in tone from developed market central banks of late.

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