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  • Jul
    24
    2014

    The Ongoing Conflict in Eastern Ukraine

    The situation in eastern Ukraine has continued to deteriorate, and resolution remains a long way off. It’s not yet clear if the recent downing of a civilian aircraft will serve to escalate or de-escalate the conflict. Our Funds remain well diversified, and both SEI and its managers are watching developments closely.

    [... More]

  • Jul
    22
    2014

    Economic Outlook: And the Music Plays On

    While developed market equity valuations are somewhat elevated and credit spreads narrow, we think it’s premature to adopt a strongly defensive investment stance. We think there is still substantial room for equities to run to the upside. In fixed-income markets, we know better than to bet against the power of the world’s central banks. One thing is clear: equity markets in the advanced economies remain dependent on earnings growth. A turnaround in Europe is one of the keys to global market performance in the months ahead. [... More]

  • Jul
    21
    2014

    Japan: Value Trap or Opportunity

    Japanese equity markets have stalled following a strong rally in 2013. The short-term outlook for Japanese equities is generally positive, but faces challenges. We are optimistic on the long-term prospects for Japan and are evaluating the opportunities. [... More]

  • Jul
    21
    2014

    Quarterly Market Commentary - Second Quarter 2014

    Uneven worldwide economic growth has resulted in global monetary policy at various stages of ebb and flow. Global inflation pressures may begin to weigh on accommodative central banking. Most developed-market equities continue to see earnings growth. A turnaround in Europe is one of the keys to global market performance in the months ahead. [... More]

  • Jun
    19
    2014

    Monthly Market Commentary - May 2014

    Economic growth showed measured improvement globally, and inflation remained below target in most regions. Most major bond markets—U.S., U.K., Japan and the eurozone—saw government bond yields fall, while global equity markets were again positive. While not as robust early in 2014 as they were last year, we believe equities have held up quite well in the face of political tensions and emerging-market growth concerns. [... More]

  • May
    22
    2014

    Monthly Market Commentary - April 2014

    Economic growth remained mixed across the globe, and inflation was tame in most regions. Most major bond markets—U.S., U.K., Japan and the eurozone—experienced a modest decrease in government bond yields. Global equity markets showed impressive resilience and were again positive. Global equity markets have not been as robust early in 2014 as they were last year, but we believe they have held up quite well in the face of political tensions and emerging-market growth concerns. [... More]

  • Apr
    25
    2014

    Annual Market Commentary - March 2014

    For the twelve month period ending 31 March, global high-yield debt performed particularly well, while emerging-markets debt and global government bonds suffered declines. Despite recent volatility, especially within emerging markets, the MSCI AC World Index remains near an all-time high.

    [... More]

  • Apr
    15
    2014

    An Economic Thaw, but a New Cold War

    It’s hard to keep a good bull down, but every once in a while it needs to catch its breath. Equities have turned a bit more volatile this year—and for good reason. [... More]

  • Apr
    10
    2014

    SEI Sees Value in Emerging Europe

    Emerging market equity valuations have fallen well below those of most developed markets. With a couple of exceptions, emerging Europe is especially attractive compared to other markets and its own history. In response, the SEI Global Unconstrained Alpha Equity Fund (the “Fund”) is allocating to a specialist manager in that region. 

    [... More]

  • Apr
    8
    2014

    Quarterly Market Commentary - First Quarter 2014

    Optimism continued in advanced economies, while emerging economies faced multiple challenges. Easing of inflation pressures around the world should keep global monetary policies accommodative. Global equities reached positive territory by quarter end, while fixed income gained as interest rates generally fell. [... More]

  • Mar
    25
    2014

    Monthly Market Commentary February 2014

    Economic data remained mixed in the U.S., despite some positive forward-looking indicators. Ongoing strength was seen in the U.K. and Japan, along with pockets of both resilience and weakness in Europe. Global bond yields were generally steady in the month following a resetting of levels in January. Global equity markets strongly rebounded as investor optimism was particularly strong across European markets. With positive economic growth in Europe and solid earnings reports from U.S. companies, there is plenty of optimism that 2014 will be a decent year. [... More]

  • Mar
    3
    2014

    Video: Bernanke Passes the Torch: A Change in Leadership but Probably Not Policy

    There is no question that U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) Chairman Ben Bernanke has made his mark. Over the years, there have been a variety of terms used to describe Bernanke’s behaviour and mindset. Journalists and investment professionals were given plenty of fodder to aid in the process. During the course of two terms as chairman of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), Bernanke had to orchestrate his way through varying scenarios—including some that a right-minded person would not wish upon your worst enemy.

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  • Feb
    27
    2014

    Volatility is...Normal

    Concerns surrounding the pace of Chinese growth, the impact of reduced quantitative-easing stimulus and the health of corporate earnings culminated in a sudden shift of investor sentiment last week. SEI is maintaining its favourable view of emerging equities, as we believe catalysts will materialise that should improve the outlook for the asset class. While emerging and developed equities have struggled out of the gate in 2014, we do not believe the elements of a more serious equity bear market are in place.

    [... More]

  • Feb
    26
    2014

    January 2014 Market and Performance Update

    The monetary policies of global central banks remain accommodative and are expected to continue as such, while global growth builds momentum. Concerns related to the U.S. Federal Reserve tapering of bond purchases, sustainability of corporate profits and Chinese output resulted in a pullback in global equities, while global fixed income gained. SEI does not believe the elements of a more serious equity bear market are in place. The most important drivers of stock-market performance in our framework are still flashing neutral-to-positive signals.

    [... More]

  • Jan
    30
    2014

    2013 Annual Market Commentary

    The generally positive sentiment that prevailed at the end of 2012 extended into January 2013. The last-minute (and much needed) passage of the U.S. fiscal cliff legislation on 1 January helped to maintain the encouraging tone. After an optimistic January, February’s mood was marred by the sequestration in the U.S., a disappointing election result in Italy and news of a credit rating downgrade of U.K. sovereign debt. March was dominated by events in the eurozone and Cyprus in particular. March finished on a positive note, as the U.S. Congress passed an extension to the nation’s debt ceiling with little fuss or brinksmanship.

    [... More]

  • Jan
    30
    2014

    Asset Allocation in the Presence of Uncertainty

    Return, risk and correlation estimates are fraught with uncertainty (the inability to know whether our estimates are correct, even if our method of estimation is unbiased). Diversification, while always desirable, is especially valuable in the presence of uncertainty. In fact, uncertainty can render diversification a more “optimal” solution than traditional mean-variance optimisation. This is why we pursue diversification in all market environments and why we maintain balanced portfolios, regardless of recent returns.

    [... More]

  • Jan
    21
    2014

    Quarterly Market Commentary - Fourth Quarter 2013

    Global central bank policies remained accommodative to close the year, even as the U.S. offered insight into a plan for reducing its economic stimulus efforts in the New Year. Led by developed markets, global equities experienced robust performance for the period, with positive results across all equity sectors. Rising yields kept global bond markets subdued. Government bonds lagged the rest of the fixed-income market.

    [... More]

  • Jan
    20
    2014

    November 2013 Market Commentary

    Accommodative monetary policies by most global central banks remain in place, with the European Central Bank taking additional steps to aid the eurozone’s recovery. Global fixed-income markets dipped, with emerging market debt retreating much more than investment-grade bonds. Global equities generally gained, led by the traditional growth sectors of health care, information technology and consumer discretionary.

    [... More]

  • Nov
    15
    2013

    October 2013 Market and Performance Update

    Global central banks maintained accommodative monetary policies in an effort to stimulate economic growth. A temporary U.S. government shutdown did not derail the year-to-date rally in global equity markets. Global fixed-income and equity markets were positive for the month, with equity’s leadership supported by the rebound in emerging-market equities.

    [... More]

  • Oct
    16
    2013

    Third Quarter 2013 Market Commentary

    The quarter ended with the focus firmly on the U.S. and its upcoming fiscal negotiations. The global fixed-income and equity markets faltered in August and emerging-market securities lagged.

    [... More]

  • Aug
    20
    2013

    Commentary: Europe Failing To Do Its Part

    Europe appears to be on the mend, but we feel the region is failing to do its part. A weakening of the euro remains a high-confidence theme of ours.

    [... More]

  • Aug
    20
    2013

    Investment Fundamentals: Bond Market Math

    In recent years, central banks have kept interest rates low in an effort to support the struggling global economy. Since hitting multi-generational lows, interest rates (and bond yields) have spiked significantly higher.

    [... More]

  • May
    1
    2013

    Long-term Returns: Bonds Versus Stocks

    Since the early 1980s, the interest rates on the European and U.S. government bond markets have dropped sharply, boosting bond returns. Depending on the period on which we look back, long-term bonds (with maturity dates longer than 10 years) have returned more than stocks, and with a much lower volatility. It is very unlikely that returns on long-term bonds in the next 10, 20 or even 30 years will beat stock returns again as the upward price potential for bonds is limited (while it is not for shares).

    [... More]

  • Jun
    5
    2012

    Big Divergences, Still Looking for a Catalyst

    May has been a challenging month for investors, with government debt fears, bank stresses and political upheaval in Europe causing renewed pessimism and another broad flight to safety. As a result, relative valuations have become quite stretched between U.S. equities and stock markets in Europe and emerging markets. While some indicators are inspiring a bit of optimism, we are maintaining our current positioning as we look out for potential catalysts. [... More]

  • Jun
    20
    2011

    U.K. Government Debt Downgrade: Would it Matter to Investors?

    In recent weeks, major credit rating agencies (which rate bonds based on the ability of the issuer to repay the debt) have expressed renewed concern over the financial outlook for the U.K. This raises the question: "What are the implications for investors?" [... More]