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INVESTMENT THOUGHTS

Quick Guide on SPACs Thumbnail

Quick Guide on SPACs

One of the most significant capital market developments of 2020 was the reemergence of Special Purpose Acquisition Companies or SPACs. These companies are often known as "blank check" companies that are created for the sole purpose of acquiring another company. Per SPAC alpha, there were 248 SPAC IPO's last year. For comparison, from 2016-2019, there were only 152. This development continued into 2021, with 296 SPAC IPOs year to date (as of March 29th) and an additional 248 filed to IPO. Chances are you have seen celebrities (Shaquille O'Neal), politicians (former House Speaker Paul Ryan), and hedge fund billionaires (Bill Ackman) decide to "sponsor" a SPAC. From an investment point of view, these investments are appealing because investors can access a privately owned company and even a venture-backed one before they go public. However, there are many nuances to these investments and considerations that need to be made. This is a quick guide on how they work, why companies could choose to go public using this method, and some of its investment risks.

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Introduction to Cryptoassets Thumbnail

Introduction to Cryptoassets

One of the bigger investing storylines of 2021 has been the continual appreciation of Bitcoin and other Cryptoassets. Since the beginning of the year, Bitcoin is up over 70%. Over the last six months, it's up just under 330%. With fears over global Central Banks continually printing fiat money and inflationary concerns, investors have been allocating to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies to hedge against inflationary risks and use these assets as a way to store value. What originally started with a select few computer scientists buying coins has now turned into a significant asset class. Today, some of the most prominent institutions worldwide are starting to allocate to the asset class. These include financial institutions, large university endowments, and big multinational corporations like Tesla. Because of those listed reasons, I wanted to put together a quick intro guide to the asset class.

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2021 ClearPath Market Outlook Thumbnail

2021 ClearPath Market Outlook

I've spent the first couple of weeks of the New Year holding meetings with asset management firms, sitting in on countless webinars, and reading numerous market outlooks in order to get an idea of what other investment strategists are thinking and how our active portfolio managers are positioned to begin 2021. Not every manager/team/asset management firm have the same outlooks, which makes this a very productive exercise. Doing this thorough research project is an undertaking I do twice a year – once in January and July. As part of this process, I compile different market perspectives to help myself and our team formulate our views and what portfolio changes, if any, we should consider.

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December Thoughts from the Research Desk Thumbnail

December Thoughts from the Research Desk

This past year has undoubtedly been challenging to navigate on various levels, including investing. This pandemic has shifted individual's perception of risk, what they value in their lives, and, for those that are able, how a shift to remote work affects how they think about lifestyle. Throughout this difficult year, portfolio managers and investment strategists that I've been in constant communication with have identified two key themes, both for the U.S. economy and the broader capital markets. The first is the theme of "resilience," and the second is the idea of "accelerated change." All of those factors are directly tied to the real estate market. In this month's piece, I take a deeper dive into the different market components and what investors are thinking.

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November Thoughts from the Research Desk Thumbnail

November Thoughts from the Research Desk

While everyone, including investors, closely watched the U.S. Presidential Election, it was ultimately the announcement of a successful vaccine trial by Pfizer that proved to be material enough to move the capital markets. When incorporating Moderna's positive news about their successful drug trial, investors have become more optimistic about 2021 and onward. Rightfully so, there is now light at the end of the tunnel. However, before we get closer to that light, there will be bouts of market volatility generated by the virus's resurgence. From listening to medical professionals and health care analysts who have been keeping a close eye on the pandemic throughout 2020, there is a growing belief that the next 12 weeks could be even worse than what we saw in March. As we head into year-end, it's essential to look ahead at the equity markets' longer-term prospects while understanding the problematic current economic conditions and how they may impact the capital markets in the short term.

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October Thoughts from the Research Desk Thumbnail

October Thoughts from the Research Desk

The upcoming U.S. Presidential Election has been on the minds of the majority of Americans and investors alike. Investors like to look ahead and predict what the election will look like and subsequently make investment decisions based on what they feel the new or continuing administration policies will be. Before we take a look at what is on investors' minds and which asset classes could perform well post Election Day, I want to point out that as long-term investors, we aren't basing any decisions based on who is elected. History has shown that the party in power is not a significant differentiator of investment returns: there are too many other factors, variables, and events that impact markets and assets over time.

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