Monthly Outlook

Beware the ‘self-fulfilling outcome’ of market sentiment

Financial markets are in danger of creating a spiral that will send asset values even lower, says Lukas Daalder. Read more ...

Google Headquarters

Go, Google, go!

Google has decrowned Apple as the world's largest company. And Facebook is snapping at its heels. Tech companies will continue to top this list in the coming years, thinks Jack Neele. Read more ...

Investors cheer negative Japanese rates

Japan’s surprise move to introduce negative interest rates is great news for its battle against deflation, says Chief Economist Léon Cornelissen. Read more ...

Beleggingsexperts: beleggers moeten een pragmatische koers varen

What the experts say on 2016: Down but not out

The global economy faces many challenges, but could still surprise on the upside. What will 2016 bring in terms of innovation, digitalization and asset allocation? Read more ...

Latest investment insights

Graph of the week

12-02-2016 | Lukas Daalder

Financing a company's debt and then having to pay for the privilege: it sounds absurd, but it has been a reality in Switzerland for some time already…

Best economic links of the web

12-02-2016 | Lukas Daalder

Who owns the buck?

Keep your nerve in high yield!

11-02-2016 | Insight | Sander Bus

Keep your nerve – and you will be rewarded in high yield bonds. That’s the core message from portfolio manager Sander Bus as macroeconomic fears continue to wobble the market.

Reducing our risk profile as markets sink

11-02-2016 | Insight | Lukas Daalder

If you believe in the January effect – the predictive power of the returns of the first month for the rest of the year – it is clear that 2016 is not going to be a very pleasant experience for a substantial part of the financial markets.

Good prospects for prime retail and office space in 2016

10-02-2016 | Outlook | Folmer Pietersma

After a strong performance of over 10% in 2015, the global real estate sector still looks attractive. Especially the prime retail and office space will offer good opportunities

Are we seeing a turnaround for emerging markets in 2016?

09-02-2016 | Outlook

After three years of poor performance, senior European fund buyers and strategists are asking themselves if 2016 could possibly be the year when a little optimism might break out in emerging markets.

Beware the ‘self-fulfilling outcome’ of market sentiment

08-02-2016 | Outlook | Lukas Daalder

Financial markets are in danger of creating a ‘self-fulfilling outcome’ that will send asset values even lower unless common sense breaks out, says Robeco’s Lukas Daalder.

The rationale of a total return approach in bonds

05-02-2016 | Interview | Kommer van Trigt

When achieving maximized risk-adjusted returns, the Robeco Global Total Return Bond Fund offers the right combination of a global universe, a flexible investment style and no benchmark constraints.

Robeco Global Total Return Bond Funds leading approach to ESG integration

05-02-2016 | Insight | Kommer van Trigt, Rikkert Scholten

The Global Total Return Bond Fund aims to capture opportunities in fixed income classes around the globe.

No sugarcoating the facts for Bunge

04-02-2016 | Insight | Peter van der Werf

Following allegations of human rights and environmental breaches against the Brazilian subsidiary of Bunge, we started an enhanced engagement with this global agribusiness company in addition to our dialogue on challenges in the soy and palm oil supply chain. The company has taken decisive action, showing good progress on our engagement objectives.

Google takes a bite out of Apple

04-02-2016 | Insight | Jack Neele

‘The king is dead. Long live the king!’ After years of being the company with the highest market value, Apple has been successfully dethroned by Google. Or rather, by Alphabet – as the company has officially been called since 2015.

Soy Supply Chain – a challenging commodity chain

04-02-2016 | Insight | Peter van der Werf

Soy is mostly used as animal feed for raising livestock and is traded as a bulk commodity. Top producers of soy in 2012 were the US, Brazil, Argentina, China and India. In that year, 212 million tons of soy were produced on more than 90 million hectares, mostly on large mono-cropping farms.

Corporate governance in Japan

04-02-2016 | Insight | Michiel van Esch

Over the recent past Robeco has followed closely the developments that change the corporate governance landscape in Japan.

Engagement as a means to lower the carbon footprint of our portfolios

04-02-2016 | Insight | Sylvia van Waveren

When national governments are starting to actually implement global warming policies after COP21, stranded assets will become an unprecedented problem for sectors relying on fossil fuels.

Investors cheer Japan’s adoption of negative interest rates

29-01-2016 | Insight | Léon Cornelissen

Japan’s surprise move to introduce negative interest rates will have little direct economic impact, but is great news for its battle against deflation and was cheered by investors, says Chief Economist Léon Cornelissen.

Timing is everything in global bond markets

28-01-2016 | Insight | Olaf Penninga

Timing is everything in bond investing as yields constantly rise and fall, says portfolio manager and seasoned market watcher Olaf Penninga.

Buying opportunities arise in volatile high yield market

27-01-2016 | Insight | Sander Bus

The turmoil in financial markets sparked by Chinese growth concerns and the associated decline in commodity prices is causing investors to worry about the high yield credit market.

Robeco wins Savvy Investor award

26-01-2016 | In the news | Lukas Daalder

Robeco Investment Solutions has won the award for ‘Best Asset Allocation Paper 2015’ by research hub Savvy Investors.

Investment experts: investors should steer a pragmatic course

25-01-2016 | Interview

Investors are still operating in a difficult, volatile market. Investment strategists Han Dieperink (Rabobank), Nathan Levy (ING) en Pim Lausberg (ABN Amro) agree on this, but they also each add their own interesting nuances to the outlook for financial markets and investing.

Apple, Google and shale gas – all thanks to the government playing venture capitalist

21-01-2016 | Interview

Economist Mariana Mazzucato, Professor of Economics of Innovation at the University of Sussex and author of 'The Entrepreneurial State' cannot repeat this often enough. Major innovators like Steve Jobs and Elon Musk are the heroes of their generation and yes, they have undeniably made a huge contribution, but the story we keep on telling each other isn't necessarily accurate.

Check how susceptible your investment portfolio is to disruption

21-01-2016 | Insight | Lukas Daalder

The digital revolution will be a game changer in relationships between macroeconomic factors such as production, consumption, labor and inflation. Lukas Daalder outlines the effects on investors. “The disruptive effect of digitalization promotes the case for active equity investing.”

Investing in digitalization: easier to avoid the losers than find the winners

21-01-2016 | Insight | Henk Grootveld

We are already digital consumers and we are set to become digital producers. We are connected to the digital financial network and have a digital doctor who keeps an eye on us. Digitalization is the engine for economic growth and Henk Grootveld explains how investors can take advantage of this.

Global economy: Down but not out

21-01-2016 | Visie | Léon Cornelissen

“Things aren‘t going well, but apart from that everything’s fine.” According to Robeco board member Hester Borrie, this quote – from Gerard Reve’s book The Evenings – perfectly encapsulates chief economist Léon Cornelissen’s view on the situation in the global economy.

Fixed Income Quarterly Outlook Q1 2016: Be selective

19-01-2016 | Outlook | Kommer van Trigt, Paul van der Worp

How to navigate fixed income markets in the New Year? Being selective in terms of regions, sectors, maturities and seniority will grow in importance.

2016: about blockchain, Solvency II and double digits

19-01-2016 | Outlook | Patrick Lemmens

After quite a volatile 2015 and a significant sell-off in December, we are rather optimistic on the outlook for financial equities in 2016, even seeing potential for double digit returns.

Africa: the next investment frontier

18-01-2016 | Insight

Although ‘Africa risk’ has increased because of falling commodity prices, investors should look through this short-to-medium-term macro turbulence and position themselves for a rebound.

New year fireworks, but we stick to our risk-on positioning

14-01-2016 | Insight | Lukas Daalder

We can be relatively short with respect to our look-back assessment of 2015: disappointing.

Thirteen things that could move markets in 2016

13-01-2016 | Outlook | Lukas Daalder

The annual predictions season officially kicked off the moment we tore the last page off our 2015 calendar. Anything from simply making future projections based on existing movements and trends to coming up with top-of-your-head ideas for ‘black swans’ – unexpected events that could have a major impact.

Review: 'The Entrepreneurial State'

12-01-2016 | Insight | Léon Cornelissen

How innovative should governments be? Very innovative, according to Mariana Mazzucato. Robeco’s chief economist Léon Cornelissen reviews her book The Entrepreneurial State.

Unlocking global opportunities in equities

12-01-2016 | Interview

In a recent webinar, Funds Europe spoke to Chris Hart, portfolio manager of the Robeco Boston Partners Global Premium Equities Fund, about how he seeks to tap into global opportunities from a value and growth perspective.

The three things spooking markets: rational or not?

11-01-2016 | Outlook | Lukas Daalder

Equities are being rattled by three fears that are leading to an overreaction in markets, says Robeco’s Lukas Daalder.

China averts short circuit, markets relieved

08-01-2016 | Insight | Jaap van der Hart, Victoria Mio

On January 7, the A-share market fell sharply after the opening bell. This triggered the new circuit breaker mechanism which had been implemented on the first trading day of 2016, freezing trading on the stock markets for the second time this year.

Asia has what it takes to face the challenges of 2016

08-01-2016 | Insight | Arnout van Rijn

A stabilizing Chinese economy; a greater focus on corporate governance in Japan – and also in Korea and China; and less volatile currency markets, with no further depreciation of Asian currencies.

Factor investing needs an active approach

07-01-2016 | Insight

We talked to Mark Voermans, senior portfolio manager at APG Quantitative Equities and an early proponent of factor investing in the Netherlands.

The battle for the digital consumer

06-01-2016 | Outlook | Jack Neele, Richard Speetjens

The time when digitization was an activity for technology companies alone has gone. Technological innovation is no longer solely the domain of big internet companies and hip startups in Silicon Valley. More and more ‘normal’ companies, in a wide range of business sectors, are embracing technological developments.

Using ESG to assess the quality of Return on Equity

06-01-2016 | Insight | Johan van der Lugt

We firmly believe that ESG analysis, combined with traditional financial analysis, can offer investors powerful insights. With our proprietary Sustainable ROE Analyzer, we use ESG information to assess the quality and sustainability of Returns on Equity (ROEs) of property & casualty insurance companies

Forget China - it’s the US that really moves markets

05-01-2016 | Insight | Lukas Daalder

Chinese growth fears and Middle East tensions caused equity markets to open the new year with significant falls – but it is the US that investors should focus on, says Robeco’s Lukas Daalder.

We keep our trading costs low

05-01-2016 | Insight | Edwin Scheffers

The Robeco Trading Desk executes around 22,000 quantitative equity orders a year. Robeco has traders in three different time zones around the world (Rotterdam, Boston and Hong Kong). This live presence enables us to monitor the executions closely and react immediately on price movements in stocks.

Trust is key in improving global access to healthcare

04-01-2016 | Interview | Stijn Vanacker

Distrust among the major protagonists in the healthcare supply chain is leading to costly inefficiencies for society. Better cooperation would have major long-term benefits for global access to care as well as innovation, says Stijn Vanacker, Healthcare Analyst in Robeco’s Global Equity team.

Graph of the year, part 3

31-12-2015 | Insight | Lukas Daalder

Countdown part 3: 6-1

Acquisitions on the way in oil sector

30-12-2015 | Outlook | Mark Glazener, Michiel Plakman, Stijn Vanacker, Vera Krückel

Low rates, rising equity prices and large corporate cash positions have created a favorable climate for mergers and acquisitions over the last year. Over three articles, Robeco’s equity investors first review the year, then look forward to see what investors can expect in 2016. Part 3: developments in the oil and gas, consumer goods and technology sectors.

Graph of the year, part 2

30-12-2015 | Insight | Lukas Daalder

Countdown part 2: 13-7

Exciting year for pharmaceutical sector

29-12-2015 | Outlook | Dirk Hoozemans, Mark Glazener, Michiel Plakman, Stijn Vanacker, Vera Krückel

Low rates, rising equity prices and large corporate cash positions have created a favorable climate for mergers and acquisitions over the last year. Over three articles, Robeco’s equity investors first review the year, then look forwards to see what investors can expect. Part 2: not more acquisitions in pharma sector, but of a different type.

Graph of the year, part 1

29-12-2015 | Insight | Lukas Daalder

Countdown part 1: 20-14

Wave of corporate acquisitions rolls on for now

28-12-2015 | Outlook | Mark Glazener, Michiel Plakman, Stijn Vanacker, Vera Krückel

Low rates, rising equity prices and large corporate cash positions have created a favorable climate for mergers and acquisitions over the last year. Over three articles, Robeco’s equity investors first review the year, then look forwards to see what investors can expect. Part 1: the wave of acquisitions in perspective.

Vaulting financial technology

23-12-2015 | Insight | Jeroen van Oerle, Patrick Lemmens, Frank van der Spek

New technologies are adopted at an increasing pace in the financial sector. Besides exciting new opportunities, they also introduce security risks. Financial institutions need to find a balance between security and convenience of use. This creates investment opportunities.

Using engagement to lower carbon footprints

23-12-2015 | Insight | Francis Condon, Sylvia van Waveren

Divesting fossil fuel companies from portfolios is not the most effective way to decarbonize portfolios, or deal with stranded assets, say RobecoSAM’s specialists.

Sugar may become the new tobacco as health problems soar

22-12-2015 | Insight

Sustainability investors will face a new challenge in how they view sugar and the role played by processed food companies in portfolios, says US nutritional and pediatric expert Robert Lustig.

The quarterly outlook for credits: zombies or creative destruction

22-12-2015 | Insight | Victor Verberk

Credit growth in China and Quantitative Easing (QE) in the US, Europe and Japan were medicines that worked for a while. Cheap money kept zombie businesses afloat and prevented creative destruction. However, the commodity cycle has rolled over and the credit cycle is proceeding. Funding pressure is increasing, the US credit market is full of animal spirits and volatility is back.

How lawyers can help combat climate change

21-12-2015 | Interview

Howard Covington was a founding shareholder and CEO of New Star Asset Management. He is now a trustee of ClientEarth, a not-for-profit environmental law group that uses the law to combat climate change.

South Africa: damage control after finance minister uproar

18-12-2015 | Insight | Cornelis Vlooswijk

On Sunday evening, December 13, South African president Zuma reappointed respected veteran Pravin Gordhan as finance minister to succeed David van Rooyen who had replaced Nhlanhla Nene three days earlier.

Emerging markets may suffer most from US rate rise

17-12-2015 | Insight | Fabiana Fedeli, Kommer van Trigt, Lukas Daalder, Mark Glazener, Pim van Vliet, PhD

The long-awaited Fed rate rise will affect some asset classes more than others, with emerging markets rather than Western bonds bearing the brunt of it, Robeco’s portfolio managers say.

Fed ushers in a brave new world

17-12-2015 | Insight | Kommer van Trigt, Lukas Daalder, Léon Cornelissen

Investors have woken up to a brave new world as the US Federal Reserve raised its interest rate for the first time in almost a decade.

IPE webinar: Factor investing works for credits too

16-12-2015 | Insight | Patrick Houweling, PhD

Watch our webcast in which Patrick Houweling and Jeroen van Zundert discuss this approach to investing in credits.

Self-learning robots: indispensable friend or threat?

16-12-2015 | Insight | Henk Grootveld, Marco van Lent

Although some see robots as a threat, they may also provide a potential solution to current problems, such as the lack of care for an aging population. This was the idea behind a lecture by Pieter Jonker, professor of Vision-based Robotics at Delft Technical University, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the growth fund Rolinco.

China is a unique place of contradictions

16-12-2015 | Insight

China is a unique place of contradictions and risks that will continue to perplex the world as it further transforms, says economist Linda Yueh.

My personal journey into sustainability investing

15-12-2015 | Interview

Solange Rouschop, global head of investment services and sustainability at ABN AMRO Retail and Private Banking, outlined to a recent RobecoSAM forum how her journey into sustainability investing began with a newborn baby in a polluted Chinese megacity.

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