Morningstar Investment Management (MIM) shared its 2024 outlook for financial markets. It’s particularly bullish on fixed income due to attractive valuations, generous yields, and falling inflation. Within the asset class, it likes developed market bonds, emerging market debt, and inflation-linked fixed income.
While it sees more upside for long-duration bonds, it sees value in shorter-duration bonds for more risk-averse investors especially given that geopolitical risk will likely remain elevated in 2024. However, the yield curve is inverted which is typically a leading indicator that rates, and inflation are going to trend lower. Both developments would be more favorable for longer-duration fixed income.
It also sees bonds returning to their traditional role of dampening portfolio volatility by providing a hedge against equities and meaningful income to investors. Due to the rise in yields, investors no longer have to take on risks in search of income as they often did during the previous decade.
In regard to corporate bonds, it sees downside risk in the event of a recession as they are ‘priced for a slowdown, not a recession’. MIM is also concerned that high rates could erode company fundamentals especially in an environment of declining revenue and earnings. Thus, it recommends keeping a close eye on credit spreads and high yield bonds
Finsum: Morningstar Investment Management shared its 2024 outlook. It’s bullish on fixed income, specifically long-duration government bonds but more cautious on corporate debt given the risk of an economic slowdown turning into a recession.