Asset TV: 2021 Municipal Opportunities – December 2020

It has been a turbulent year economically, politically and in the markets. What lies ahead in 2021 for fixed income investors? Whitney Fitts, CFA, SVP and Portfolio Manager speaks with Jenna Dagenhart of Asset TV about tax-exempt market conditions and opportunities.

Review and

January 2021

“Georgia has commanded much political attention in recent days and reports now indicate that the Democrats have narrowly won both Senate run-off elections…While we do not understate the importance of these races, their impact on the Biden agenda may be overstated by the markets and media…”

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December 2020

“While widespread vaccination would be positive across-the board, certain tax-exempt sectors that have lagged during the market recovery would likely see the most significant fundamental improvements…”

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November 2020

“While not receiving top billing in the media, 128 measures were on the ballot at the state and local level in the Nov. 3 election. These measures can have an important impact on state and local credit trends…”

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October 2020

“We would not view failure of Congress to pass an additional round of federal aid for state and local governments this fall as a “credit cliff”…”

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Coronavirus and
the Markets


Municipal Credit Observations – November 2020

“Our belief that larger issuers with diversified revenue streams, substantial reserves, and management acumen would weather the storm has so far proven to be the case. That said, credit vigilance remains imperative…”

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Corporate Credit Observations – August 2020

“We believe that despite today’s absolute level of rates, the corporate bond market still offers compelling relative value.  Despite record-breaking summer issuance, spreads continue to grind tighter as investor demand remains high…”

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Municipal Credit Observations – August 2020

“In May we wrote about municipal credit quality and how Appleton was seeking to separate risk from opportunity.  Our stance remains the same – a diligent research process is key and we believe our longstanding preference for high quality and well-established issuers will serve well in the current environment…”

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Higher Education Bond Issues

“We recently evaluated and ranked all Appleton approved higher education issuers based on demand profile and financial strength.  Doing so helps us project how well they are likely to stand up to prolonged adverse conditions.”

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Economic and
Market Commentary


Operating in a Low Yield Environment

“Riding a multi-decade fixed income bull market, municipal bond yields have fallen to levels not seen since the Eisenhower presidency.  For those not well versed in American political history, that would be the 1950s, a time period that predates the professional experience of nearly all of today’s financial advisors…”

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Differentiating Credit Vigilance From Complacency

“All too often favorable capital market conditions have generated a degree of investor and analyst complacency.  With municipal credit spreads at near record lows, the margin for safety has been diminished…”

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Opportunity Zones: A Look at Potentially Winning Models

“Opportunity Zones are fast becoming a real estate development buzzword, as powerful tax incentives unleashed by the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act sparks a proliferation of private capital investment into economically stressed census tracts…”

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Opportunity Zones:
An Impetus for Municipal Credit Enhancement

“As capital flows into Opportunity Zones, we are actively looking for localities with the best prospects … Weeding through Opportunity Zone tracts early in their evolution offers our research team an ability to identify municipal issuers with overlooked future credit prospects…”

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Q4 2020

Looking Ahead to a Post-Pandemic World

“What can we learn from these trying times? … This year has shined a spotlight on risk, most notably a need to proactively prepare for it.  As advisors, this speaks to several financial planning fundamentals…”

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Q3 2020

What’s in Your Index?

“We feel your primary benchmark should be your financial plan and that’s what we manage towards…while we often speak about “the market”, what matters most is how your portfolio works for you…”

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Q2 2020

An Age of No Limits

“On April 9th, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell declared that the U.S. central bank was committed to “forcefully, pro-actively, and aggressively” helping the country recover, and that there were “no limits” to the money the Fed could deploy…The eventual implications of these prescriptions remain unknown…”

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Q1 2020

What Investors Can Learn from CEOs, Army Rangers, Pilots and Police

“Stress impacts the brain’s cognitive and emotional intelligence, critical abilities needed to make sound decisions.  Understanding how this occurs can be highly applicable to individual investors…”

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Video Briefs

December 2020

Asset TV: Municipal Opportunities – December 2020

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August 2020

Asset TV: Municipal Credit Observations – August 2020

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May 2020

Asset TV: 2020 Municipal Market Strategy – Opportunities and Considerations

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February 2020

Asset TV: 2020 Municipal Strategies and Considerations

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