Plot Twist: Your Bond Portfolio May Be Riskier Than You Think

Government bonds are often referred to as risk-free or safe-haven assets, and, in the right context, this is a correct label as they are low volatility investments that represent money lent to a sovereign nation with almost no risk of default. However, in the first half of 2022, a diversified portfolio of global government bonds returned -13.3% in CAD terms. So, how do we reconcile an outcome like this with the near-risk-free or safe-haven aspect of the asset class?

Death to the 60/40! Long Live the 60/40!

The traditional 60/40 balanced portfolio is no stranger to coming under fire. Many pundits have decreed the death of the balanced portfolio, arguing that a low yield environment will prove insurmountable and bonds will no longer be able to provide necessary diversification for investor portfolios. This proclamation has yet to be proven correct, and in the investment management industry, being too early is the same thing as being wrong. That being said, is this time different?

The Impacts of Risk Parity Strategies

Ray Dalio’s Bridgewater is the latest celebrity investment management firm to opine that in a low-interest rate environment government bonds not only offer little in the way of value for investors, but that their ability to provide risk reduction during financial stress will be impaired as well. As this article from Bloomberg reports, Bridgewater is…

Good Old Faithful, or Just Old?

The popular 60/40 balanced portfolio (60% equities, 40% fixed income) has been a staple for many investors through their lifetimes and deservingly so. According to a recent piece by M. Batnick, 60/40 portfolios have boasted an annualized rate of return of 7.5% and positive rolling five-year returns in 99.4% of cases over the past half…

Vitamin D: Harvesting the Diversification Premium Through Prudent Leverage


In our latest Insight piece, we explore the parallels between the poker table and the world of investing by studying the nuances of risk and uncertainty. Authors Scott Smith (Managing Partner) and Ben Reeves (Manager, Data Science & Engineering) demonstrate how utilizing a Risk Parity strategy can help investors embrace uncertainty and derive more stable investment outcomes.

Why You Should Hold Bonds

The most recent pullback in equity prices due to uncertainty around COVID-19 has resulted in another leg lower for bond yields as investors clambered to gain exposure to the safety of fixed income products. The steady march lower in yields is once again prompting market participants to question how much lower yields can go, and…

Why Bonds Should Be a Staple, No Matter Your Portfolio

With the recent volatility in financial markets, some investors are finally seeing the diversification benefit of holding fixed income in their portfolios alongside their riskier equity investments. In the current bull market – the longest one in history – it is easy to look at the allocation to bonds as nothing more than a drag…