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Investment Insights

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: COVID-19 — Taking the Nation’s Economic Pulse

July 7, 2020
The latest news on the economic front has shown some encouraging signs that the country’s businesses have started to rebound from the widespread shutdowns this spring. However, areas of concern remain, particularly in light of the COVID-19 virus’ recent spike in some parts of the country.

First Flash: Second Quarter 2020

July 1, 2020
A summary of the market and economic developments during the second quarter.

The Vantagepoint View — Second Quarter

July 1, 2020
A summary of Vantagepoint Investement Adviser's latest 12-month outlook for the stock and bond markets. 

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: COVID-19 in the Rearview Mirror?

June 24, 2020
After carving out what is hopefully a bottom in late March, the markets notched a hefty rebound in the months that followed. The combination of policy support and economic optimism overwhelmed fears of COVID-19 and the worldwide chaos it brought, leading to hopes that the worst effects would be visible only in the rearview mirror. However, over the past week, evidence of the spread of COVID-19 in both the U.S. and overseas resurfaced with a vengeance.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: Do the Markets Remember There’s an Upcoming Election?

June 17, 2020
After weeks of pricing in bleak, worst-case scenarios in late February and much of March, the market now seems to see few if any clouds on the horizon. The major stock indexes are flirting with their old highs and counting on the Fed's ability to keep interest rates at rock-bottom levels and to intervene in any areas of the financial markets that might run into trouble.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: The Jobs Report, the Market, and the Real Economy

June 9, 2020
After months of seemingly non-stop negative headlines, Friday's jobs report brought a much-needed dose of good news. The Bureau of Labor Statistics' widely watched monthly payroll report showed the economy added an impressive 2.5 million jobs in May after shedding -20.7 million jobs in April.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: Reopenings, Protests, and the Market

June 3, 2020
The protests, riots, and curfews that have evolved during the past week in multiple cities — along with the underlying issues that prompted them — have been tragic on many levels. However, while the situation is clearly very serious, so far, the financial markets seem to be looking ahead to the prospects for an economic restart and recovery later this year and into 2021 and 2022.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: Trust, but Verify

May 21, 2020
Back in the Cold War days of the 1980s, as President Ronald Reagan was negotiating with the Soviet Union, he adopted and popularized an old Russian proverb: trust, but verify. The former president's signature phrase increasingly comes to mind as we monitor the latest COVID-19 news and the market’s reaction to it. .

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: COVID-19 and the Great Outdoors

May 15, 2020
Across the nation, when it comes to decisions about how to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, the choices for government officials in recent months have been stark: Close down your state or city and strangle your economy and businesses in an effort to save lives or open it up and potentially put your citizens — particularly the elderly — at risk.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: The Unemployment Tsunami

May 12, 2020
The market expected the latest monthly payroll report to be bad. And a close look at the numbers shows they were truly terrible. The April report, which was released Friday, May 8, 2020, was the first one that reflected a full month of economic activity (or in this case a lack thereof) since the COVID-19 pandemic and its accompanying shutdowns hit the U.S.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: Models, Markets, and Reality

May 6, 2020
Models of all stripes, which offer a range of projected outcomes based on differing conditions and variables, have received greater attention and scrutiny in recent weeks.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective: COVID-19 and the Lockdown Thaw

May 1, 2020
The quick switch to social distancing mode and the closure of large swaths of the U.S. and global economy have been among the most difficult and painful adjustments that individuals, businesses, and government officials have had to undertake in generations. And that was the easy part.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
(Un)Employment and the Great Reopening

April 24, 2020
Thursday brought the latest data on the (un)employment front, which was still largely — though not entirely — negative. In all, 4.4 million people filed for first-time unemployment benefits last week, which is a staggering number that, prior to last month, would have dwarfed all weekly records. Now, however, it’s a sign that the pace of job losses seems to be slowing, which is definitely a good thing. 

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
Supply Does Not Equal Demand — Oil Disruptions...And More

April 21, 2020
Nearly two months ago, coronavirus (COVID-19) fears sparked a stock market shock that would, in the weeks that followed, send the major indexes tumbling faster than they ever had before. And on Monday, April 20, those chaotic market declines spread to commodities — specifically, the oil market. 

Market Overview: April 17, 2020

First Quarter Equity Market Overview and Outlook
On March 12, 2020, the bull market’s 11-year run came to an end. Its plodding ascent earned the distinction of being the longest in history. In contrast, the bear market that took hold has resembled a fleeting mad dash.

First Quarter Fixed Income Market Overview and Outlook
Fixed income markets responded to the quarter’s events by taking participants on a roller coaster ride. In aggregate, U.S. Treasury yields adopted a risk-off posture, shifting downward by at least 100 basis points at every spot on the yield curve.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
The Return to Normalcy and the Question of Timing

April 14, 2020
The stock market's sizable gains last week, combined with encouraging news that the number of coronavirus (COVID-19)-related deaths in the U.S. declined for two days in a row, have fostered hopes that the virus' spread may be peaking in the U.S. And that has sparked speculation about when the quarantines and shutdowns will be lifted, and the nation's economy reopened. 

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
Coronavirus and the Markets — The Good News and the Realistic News

April 8, 2020
Let’s start with the good news. The major indexes scored sizable gains on Monday, April 6, 2020, amid hopes that the coronavirus' (COVID-19) infection rate had hit its peak in New York City and that the proverbial curve is starting to bend due to the physical distancing measures in place. Monday's market gains seemed to indicate that a slower infection rate in New York could mean that the disease is hitting its apex not just in that city, but in the nation as a whole. 

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
Check Those Numbers — March Unemployment and Coronavirus Testing

April 3, 2020
After notching much-welcomed gains in the wake of the government’s $2 trillion stimulus package, the market’s abrupt pivot to bullishness seemed to waver as the first quarter wound to a close and the second quarter got underway. In recent days, the market has seen a lot of back-and-forth, indecisive action as traders digested the latest coronavirus (COVID-19) news, along with early reports showing the severity of the economic fallout that the disease is leaving in its wake. 

The Vantagepoint View — First Quarter

April 1, 2020
A summary of Vantagepoint Investement Adviser's latest 12-month outlook for the stock and bond markets. 

First Flash: First Quarter 2020

April 1, 2020
After an 11-year hibernation, the bear market awoke with a vengeance in the first quarter, courtesy of a worldwide pandemic and falling oil prices.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
A Bull Within a Bear Market?

March 31, 2020
The government's sweeping $2 trillion stimulus package last week came as a welcome relief to the market. The far-reaching legislation includes tax refund checks, expanded unemployment aid, loans for large and small businesses, and funding for the nation's health-care system, among other efforts aimed at staunching the economic bleeding. It comes on the heels of massive pushes by the Federal Reserve to shore of up the nation’s financial system.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
Recent Market Gains and the Road Ahead

March 26, 2020
This week saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average log the biggest one-day increase in its history on Tuesday, followed by another gain on Wednesday. That marked the first time since the market's ferocious sell-off began that it's scored two days of back-to-back increases. Meanwhile, the broader S&P 500 followed a path similar to the Dow. Those market gains stemmed from the fact that the nation's two major political parties appeared to have come to an agreement on a stimulus deal that is roughly double the dollar amount that was originally anticipated.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
Market Volatility and the Stimulus Package

March 23, 2020
Despite the Federal Reserve’s (the Fed’s) recent herculean efforts to calm the waters, the markets remained volatile during Monday’s trading session. We believe that’s largely due to the fact that Congress’ coronavirus (COVID-19)-inspired stimulus package is still being hashed out, as of the current writing.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
The "Why" of the Fed's Actions

March 20, 2020
Over the last few decades, with each appearance of a new virus or pathogen, the medical community's concerns often focus primarily on the means of transmission and the new disease's impact on the people it infects. A secondary concern is whether the virus will mutate, rendering any tools initially developed to fight it - such as vaccinations or treatments — ineffective.

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
The Fed, Coronavirus, and the Markets

March 18, 2020
The market's recent coronavirus-inspired slide has come with a ferocity and quickness that surpasses anything in the collective memory of most market participants. Similarly, the Federal Reserve's latest efforts to try to stem the financial and economic fallout that may grow from it haven't been seen since the darkest days of the 2007-2008 financial crisis. In this piece, we'll take a closer look at the Fed's latest actions and what it may mean for the markets going forward.

Private Alternatives Is Missing Piece in DC Plan Retirement Security

March 18, 2020
What would it take to bring defined contribution plan performance into line with defined benefit plans?

The Vantagepoint Market Perspective:
Coronavirus and the Markets: Short-Term and Long-Term Impacts and Considerations

March 16, 2020
The worrying global spread of the coronavirus infections and the failure of the alliance of OPEC and 10 non-OPEC members led by Russia to agree on a unified position in recent weeks have sent stock and oil prices sliding with a quickness and velocity not seen since the 2007-2008 financial crisis. However, in terms of investing and saving for retirement, we believe it's important to distinguish between short-term and long-term potential impacts.

 

Demystifying Non-Agency Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities

A primer on the different flavors of commercial mortgage-backed securities and the roles they play in fixed income funds.

Stable Value in 2018: Using the Full Tool Box to Navigate Rising Rates

Describes key tools for constructing a stable value fund that can weather a rising interest rate environment.

Global Growth Prospects and the Upcoming U.S. Earnings Season

March 26, 2020: Wayne Wicker, Chief Investment Officer, Vantagepoint Investment Advisers, LLC, discusses the pandemic's impact on the markets, how it compares to past market downturns, and what may lie ahead. TD Ameritrade's Nicole Petallides.
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Coronavirus Creates More Market Volatility with Major Swings

March 27, 2020: Wayne Wicker, Chief Investment Officer, Vantagepoint Investment Advisers, LLC, discusses the market's recent volatility - both on the upside and on the downside - with Cheddar's Kristen Scholer.
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