Bond Investing in a Low Interest Rate Environment

July 3, 2013

The investing environment of the past few years has been the most challenging that US bond managers have experienced in decades. Rates approached historic lows and then continued to ratchet still lower over the past three years. The search for value has evolved into an exercise requiring considerable patience, perception, and analysis. In recent months, […]

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High Grade Core Intermediate 1st Quarter 2012

April 25, 2012

In the parlance of today’s investment climate, the first quarter was essentially a “risk on” period.  Stocks rallied, corporate bonds outperformed, and Treasury bonds sank in value.  While the economy’s future remains uncertain, this rosier view was not unfounded.  As the data below shows, the economy did indeed accelerate, jobs were created, and signs of a […]

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Market Review and Outlook 1st Quarter 2012

April 23, 2012

Mixed economic data, concerns about Europe, and supply-demand dynamics continued to drive the municipal bond market’s performance during the first quarter of 2012.  Although rates moved only modestly upward from year-end to March 31st, the volatility within the quarter was far more dramatic as 10-year AAA municipal yields surged over 60 basis points from January […]

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Multicurrency Commentary 1st Quarter 2012

April 20, 2012

The Samson Multicurrency Strategy entered the quarter with significant overweights to commodity and growth oriented currencies such as the Canadian dollar, the Australian dollar, the Swedish krona, and Norwegian krone.  We were led to these allocations by our investment process, which is based on analysis of fundamental data and a study of relative central bank […]

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Multicurrency Commentary 4th Quarter 2011

January 25, 2012

The safe haven dollar rally that dominated much of 2011 faded as the world embraced the “risk on” trade with renewed vigor. During the 4th quarter oil surged, equity markets rallied, and the US dollar began to lose value.  Though the Federal Reserve Majors Index fell in value for the period, performance varied greatly across […]

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High Grade Core Intermediate 4th Quarter 2011

January 24, 2012

4th Quarter 2011 Review and Outlook The Samson High Grade Core Intermediate strategy entered 2011 with a material underweight to Treasuries (which we viewed as overvalued), and considerable non-benchmark allocations to undervalued tax-exempt municipals and Build America Bonds. We also had a modest overweight to corporate bonds, with our emphasis on high quality, transparent industrials. […]

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Update on Municipal Bankruptcies and Multi-Notch Downgrades

November 29, 2011

The municipal market is experiencing a heightened awareness of credit risk in large measure due to high profile bankruptcies such as Jefferson County, Alabama and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  Pressures on municipal credits have increased over the last several years, manifesting in two notable developments: the rare municipal bankruptcy filing, and the more common multi-notch downgrade.  Samson purchases only high quality municipal securities […]

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What the Bank of China Can Teach Us about Investing in Foreign Currencies

November 21, 2011

The head of China’s central bank, Zhou Xiaochuan, recently announced plans to keep diversifying China’s currency reserves away from the U.S. dollar.  Zhou’s statement is important because of the power of his rationale, and because of the weight China’s large currency reserves gives to any of his statements.  He plans to reduce the central bank’s exposure […]

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Multicurrency Commentary 3rd Quarter 2011

October 21, 2011

During the 3rd quarter the dollar staged a powerful safe haven rally. Though our strategy emphasized currencies associated with more hawkish central banks, and stronger balance sheet nations (like Norway and Sweden), the broader market thought otherwise and allocated funds to the Japanese yen. We believe countries that are good stewards of their economic resources will have […]

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High Grade Core Intermediate 3rd Quarter 2011

October 19, 2011

In previous commentaries, we expressed our concern that certain sectors of the market, such as Treasuries, were overvalued.  We also noted that we would maintain a fully invested posture and seek to generate returns consistent with our comparative index, but with less credit and interest rate risk.  Thus, we targeted a shorter duration than the benchmark, and […]

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