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Key publications
Best reads of 2019

Key publications

With the end of the year rapidly approaching, we’d like to highlight some of the best content created by Robeco in 2019.

We have Sustainability Inside

Robeco is a pioneer of sustainable investing, standing at the forefront of this vibrant style for two decades. We embrace it wholly, integrating environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into our entire investment process. But why do we like it so much? Our book, ‘Sustainability Inside’, explains why SI lies at the heart of everything that we do.

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5-year outlook: Escaping the hall of mirrors

Central banks should stop pandering to market expectations and the ‘hall of mirrors’ that this creates. That is the core message from Expected Returns 2020-2024, a period that is likely to see a recession. Higher risk seen as being inevitable in the five-year outlook means Robeco’s Expected Returns for the major asset classes have been revised downwards.

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2020 outlook: A Tale of Two Scenarios

To paraphrase Dickens, uncertainty over whether the decade-long bull market will end in a recession means investors could face a tale of two highly contrasting scenario. Our 2020 outlook assesses whether the new year will bring either 'the best of times' or the 'worst of times'. We expect stocks to be underpinned by earnings growth, but recession fears will prevail.

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The promises and challenges of factor investing

Factor investing seems to be pausing for breath after many years of rapid adoption, causing some to question whether the investment style is going out of favor. In an extensive joint interview, Benedikt Henne of Allianz Global Investors and Robeco’s Joop Huij provide some insights on what could be on the horizon for factor investing.

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Strong hands needed to unlock factor investing

Adverse timing can completely wipe out the returns generated by factor investing strategies. In an in-depth article with added audio, Pim van Vliet, Head of Conservative Equities, argues that investors with ‘strong hands’ ─ those who are patient and are persistent regarding style exposures ─ are much more likely to reap the rewards.

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‘Asset management is all about intellectual property’

Three big trends are leading to structural changes in the asset management industry, Robeco’s Chief Investment Officer Peter Ferket says in a wide-ranging podcast. One is the technological innovation which shows that success is about having the right intellectual property. Fees charged are a second issue, while factor investing remains a strong trend.

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How to avoid greenwashing

Many investors claim to be adopting sustainable investing, when much of it is actually greenwashing – simply doing a few token things as a PR exercise. In a landmark column, Robeco’s Head of ESG Integration Masja Zandbergen explains why having a credible approach to SI is essential to be able to distinguish yourself from those merely paying lip service to it.

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Factors are here to stay

Are factor premiums here to stay? Guido Baltussen, Laurens Swinkels and Pim van Vliet recently published a new groundbreaking academic research paper that looks at the evidence supporting the existence of various factor premiums across multiple asset classes, using new and previously unused historical financial data.

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