Factor investing in emerging credit markets

Factor investing entails allocating to systematic strategies that historically have shown a higher Sharpe ratio than the entire market. Well-known factors are Value, Momentum, Size and Low-Risk. Most of the research on factor investing has been conducted on equity markets. The academic literature for factor investing in credit markets has not been as developed as for equities. In particular, hardly any work has been done on emerging credits, while the asset class has rapidly gained popularity amongst investors in the current low yield environment.

The goal of this research project is to investigate these factors for emerging credits. One of the key challenges will be to deal with the diverse nature of EM credits. Country risks can be dominant drivers of risks and returns. Robeco Quantitative Research has access to a unique historical database of bond data that enables back-testing and evaluating of factor strategies. You will conduct a literature study and implement various factors to determine their predictive power for bond returns.

The project covers the entire quant model development cycle: analyzing the data, programming the back-tests, analyzing the results, discussing results with researchers and portfolio managers, writing a research report and giving a presentation. As with all Super Quant internships, the assignment will be supervised by an experienced empirical researcher of Robeco’s Quantitative Research department. Practical feedback will be provided by several credit portfolio managers. Creative, analytic and programming skills are essential in order to successfully complete the project.

Are you interested?

Let us know your motivation and send it together with your CV and list of grades to SQ@robeco.nl.


Bloomberg.com, 2017, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-09-17/as-china-s-bond-market-opens-global-funds-see-watershed-moment

Houweling, P., J. van Zundert, 2017, “Factor Investing in Corporate Bonds”, Financial Analysts Journal

Israel, I., J. Kang, S.A. Richardson, 2016, “Investing with Style in Corporate Bonds”, working paper, http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2576784