Displaying items by tag: Fidelity

Saturday, 20 April 2024 03:50

T. Rowe Price’s Aggressiveness Pays Off

  1. Rowe Price made an aggressive bet in 2020 by increasing exposure to equities in its target return funds, as equities were crashing due to the pandemic. At the time, the asset manager was criticized for this move; however, it’s paid off in spades, with the S&P 500 hitting new, all-time highs earlier this month. As a result of its success, T. Rowe Price now has the third-most assets in terms of target-date funds behind Fidelity and Vanguard. 

Further, T. Rowe Price has remained up to 98% invested in its target-date funds, which is higher than its peers. According to an analysis from Cerulli, retirees hold up to 55% of their portfolio in equities at T. Rowe Price. Compare this to Fidelity and Vanguard, where equity allocations are 38% and 30%, respectively. 

Despite its recent success, some continue to believe that T. Rowe Price’s target-date funds are taking on too much equity risk. According to Ron Surz, the president of Target Date Solutions, “80% of assets should be risk-free at retirement. Virtually all target date funds are way riskier than the theory they follow." However, some believe that higher allocations to equities are necessary given that lifespans are increasing, which increases the risk that retirees could outlive their savings. 

Finsum: T. Rowe Price is pursuing a more aggressive strategy than its peers when it comes to equity allocations in its target-date funds. So far, it’s worked well, but there are some skeptics.    

Published in Alternatives
Tuesday, 12 March 2024 04:11

Some Advisors Slow to Adopt Alternatives

Fidelity recently conducted a survey of advisors and found that only 26% currently have exposure to alternative investments. In contrast, 86% of institutional investors have exposure to the asset class. 


The survey also revealed that many advisors are looking for more resources to help them evaluate various alternative offerings before they feel comfortable recommending them to clients. This is despite other surveys showing that many advisors would like to increase allocation to alternatives due to their benefits such as diversification and non-correlated returns. 


Specifically, advisors cited the need for more due diligence on strategies and managers in addition to concerns about liquidity as obstacles to adoption. Many also indicated the difficulty of communicating with clients about these products given the number of options and complexities.


Adding to the challenge is that each clients’ appropriate exposure to alternatives depends on factors like time horizon, liquidity needs, and eligibility. This level of customization increases the burden on advisors to understand various options in a comprehensive manner. 


In order to address these problems, Fidelity is expanding research on various alternative investment strategies. Initially, the research will focus on private credit, private real assets, and private equity funds. According to the company, these types of tools and resources will accelerate adoption of alternatives by advisors. 

Finsum: A recent survey by Fidelity showed that many advisors have been slow to adopt alternatives. A primary reason is that advisors have a need for more due diligence on the various products and strategies before they feel comfortable recommending them to clients.

Published in Wealth Management
Monday, 04 March 2024 07:38

Fidelity Embracing Active ETFs

Fidelity Investments launched a new active fixed income ETF this week, the Fidelity Low Duration Bond Factor ETF (FLDB). The ETF will invest 80% of its assets in short duration, investment-grade debt, consisting of floating rate notes and Treasuries, with a fee of 20 basis points. It seeks to balance credit risk and interest rate risk while outperforming benchmarks. 


Greg Friedman, Fidelity’s head of ETF management and strategy, noted, “It’s an asset class within fixed income that did not have any coverage until this morning. It fits a client's need to have that short duration exposure to a broad-based market of fixed income products.” 


Fixed income ETFs are experiencing a boom in terms of new issues and inflows. According to Tony Kelly, the co-founder of BondBloxx, assets in fixed income ETFs will reach 40% by the end of the decade from 20% currently. Active ETFs are finding traction as they allow for specific thematic exposure without sacrificing liquidity. Last year, assets under management for active ETFs increased by 37%. 


Fidelity is also jumping on the trend. In addition to launching FLDB, it debuted the Fidelity Fundamental Large Cap Value ETF (FFLV).  Its new line of ‘Fundamental suite ETFs’ will be active as it will utilize a quantitative overlay to their typical process. In total, Fidelity has 66 ETFs with $55 billion in assets under management. 

Finsum: Fidelity is betting big on active ETFs as it launched 2 new ones this week. Investors have been receptive to these products as it gives them narrow exposure in a liquid vehicle. 


Published in Bonds: Total Market
Friday, 23 February 2024 03:17

Benefits of Active Fixed Income ETFs

A major development in 2023 was the boom in active fixed income ETFs as measured by inflows and launches of new ETFs. Some reasons for interest in the category include opportunities for outperformance, lower volatility, and diversification. Ford O’Neil, fixed income portfolio manager at Fidelity Investments, sees structural reasons for the asset class’s recent success and believes it will continue.


According to O’Neil, there is more potential for outperformance in active fixed income vs equities, because indices only cover about half of the total bond market. In contrast, equity indices encompass a much larger share of the entire stock market. This means that the market will be less efficient, resulting in more undervalued securities. 


Active managers are also able to better navigate the current landscape, where there is considerable uncertainty about the economy and monetary policy given more latitude when it comes to security selection. He notes that active fixed income ETFs have delivered strong outperformance vs passive fixed income ETFs over the last 8 years. 


He stresses that identifying these opportunities is dependent on proper fundamental research and quantitative analysis followed by effective implementation. O’Neil is the co-manager of several active fixed income ETFs including the Fidelity Total Bond ETF (FBND) or the Fidelity High Yield Factor ETF (FDHY).


Published in Bonds: Total Market
Monday, 27 February 2023 05:08

Fidelity Launched Active Muni Bond Fund

Fidelity Investments recently announced it was adding to its active fixed-income strategies lineup with the launch of the Fidelity Municipal Core Plus Bond Fund (FMBAX). According to Fidelity, FMBAX is available commission-free and with no investment minimum to individual investors and financial advisors through Fidelity’s online brokerage platforms. The fund has a 0.37% net expense ratio and a 1.28% gross expense ratio. FMBAX is measured against the Bloomberg Municipal Bond Index and the Fidelity Municipal Core Plus Bond Composite Index, and aims to provide a high current yield exempt from federal income taxes, and may also consider capital growth. Co-managers Cormac Cullen, Michael Maka, and Elizah McLaughlin will analyze the credit quality of the issuer, security-specific features, current and potential future valuation, and trading opportunities to select investments. The fund launch comes at a time when the retail and institutional demand for higher-yielding municipal bond funds is growing. According to the fund giant, this new product seeks to offer a strong yield and total return profile, with potentially lower volatility than pure high-yield funds. Jamie Pagliocco, Fidelity’s fixed income head has this to say about the fund launch, “Fidelity’s growing suite of active fixed income investment products leverage Fidelity’s breadth and depth of resources and expertise as an active manager to identify investment opportunities across the credit spectrum.”

Finsum:Fidelity Investments launched an active municipal bond mutual fund amid increased retail and institutional demand for higher-yielding municipal bond funds.

Published in Bonds: Total Market
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