Explore our thinking about today's financial markets


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Company diversity and social justice

March 10, 2021  |  Equity

Company diversity is a step toward equity and equity is a step toward inclusion, which is important to company success.

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Company diversity and social justice

Capital Markets Outlook

The market’s potential sugar high

The market’s potential sugar high

January 14, 2021  |  Capital Markets Outlook

Amid a likely tug-of-war between positive and negative economic news, we favor investing with a flexible approach.

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Fixed Income Outlook

Bond investors chase yields amid vaccine rollout

Bond investors chase yields amid vaccine rollout

January 27, 2021  |  Fixed Income Outlook

Global financial markets trended higher during the fourth quarter, powered by the emergence of COVID-19 vaccines and continuing stimulus policies.

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Equity Insights

Don’t be afraid of the inflation bogeyman

Don’t be afraid of the inflation bogeyman

April 1, 2021  |  Equity Insights

We look at the impact of rising inflation on equity performance, industries that could thrive, and strategies for positioning portfolios.

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All posts
Company diversity and social justice

Company diversity and social justice

Company diversity is a step toward equity and equity is a step toward inclusion, which is important to company success.

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Tapping into the growth potential of small-cap stocks

Tapping into the growth potential of small-cap stocks

Investors may want to consider the potential of small-cap stocks as they review allocations amid changing economic cycles.

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With people saving more, it may be time for a 401(k) reset

With people saving more, it may be time for a 401(k) reset

During the pandemic, workers for a time saved more than ever before, which could represent an opportunity for a 401(k) reset.

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China leads, other emerging markets lag

China leads, other emerging markets lag

China is leading the economic recovery among emerging-market countries, buoyed by stimulus and stringent COVID-19 measures.

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U.S. economy remains a centerpiece in 2020 vote

U.S. economy remains a centerpiece in 2020 vote

Fiscal policy will be a key focus for investors after the November election.

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The future is happening faster now

The future is happening faster now

We rarely see as much disruption as we have seen in 2020, and we believe this offers investment opportunities.

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Perspective on keeping perspective

Perspective on keeping perspective

Five months into our pandemic environment, financial professionals are looking for ways to keep their work in perspective.

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Deglobalization creates new winners in China

Deglobalization creates new winners in China

The trade war, pandemic, and the Made in China 2025 initiative are resulting in a deglobalization trend and opportunities in China.

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Staying at home increases spending on homes

Staying at home increases spending on homes

As the economy continues to be challenged by the COVID-19 pandemic, we are seeing two notable trends in the U.S. housing industry.

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V-shaped recovery proving elusive

V-shaped recovery proving elusive

The U.S. and global economic recoveries are unlikely to be “V-shaped” as businesses and consumers remain wary of returning to pre-pandemic behavior.

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Vaccine is a wild card for the economy

Vaccine is a wild card for the economy

A vaccine for the coronavirus will be supportive of risky assets even if the economic benefits take longer to materialize.

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The role of asset allocation in glide path selection

The role of asset allocation in glide path selection

Knowing the investments and how they are combined in a glide path is crucial in target-date fund selection.

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Disruptive change: A growth driver for small companies

Disruptive change: A growth driver for small companies

Disruptive change is often the force that enables small companies to compete against their larger peers.

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Navigating market turmoil: Our intrinsic value compass

Navigating market turmoil: Our intrinsic value compass

Our investments in the communications sector help illustrate our intrinsic value approach to finding opportunities.

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Sustainability research: A week in the life of our team

Sustainability research: A week in the life of our team

Our research includes discussions with company managements, other researchers and investors, industry and subject experts, and non-profit organizations.

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Behavioral shifts bring investment opportunities

Behavioral shifts bring investment opportunities

Many businesses that have been resilient and strong during the COVID-19 crisis are likely to become even stronger in the aftermath.

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Coronavirus tests limits of U.S. stimulus plans

Coronavirus tests limits of U.S. stimulus plans

The coronavirus pandemic is testing the limits of fiscal and monetary policy responses from Congress and the Federal Reserve to boost the economy and calm financial markets.

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Sustainable value: Gender diversity on corporate boards

Sustainable value: Gender diversity on corporate boards

Diversity in companies — including gender diversity — can have a positive impact on company performance and strategic ability.

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ESG issues alive in healthcare

ESG issues alive in healthcare

Our team analyzes medical costs and access as ESG issues affecting human well-being and sustainable economic development.

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What’s next for the hard-hit financials sector?

What’s next for the hard-hit financials sector?

The financials sector has been among the hardest hit from the COVID-19-induced equity market selloff, but there are reasons for optimism.

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Perspectives on COVID-19

Perspectives on COVID-19

Putnam’s health-care analysts and portfolio managers offer their outlooks and perspectives on key aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Oil’s wild ride and what lies ahead

Oil’s wild ride and what lies ahead

Demand for oil has collapsed as the coronavirus pandemic devastates the global economy and curbs much of the need for fuel from companies and consumers.

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Navigating bond yields

Navigating bond yields

The trajectory of bonds yields will depend on the Federal Reserve's policies and fiscal stimulus amid a sharp global economic downturn.

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Investing for growth in volatile markets

Investing for growth in volatile markets

Putnam portfolio managers discuss managing risk and finding investment opportunities in challenging markets.

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Help plan sponsors be strategic fiduciaries

Help plan sponsors be strategic fiduciaries

As companies react to the economic shock, advisors can offer ideas to help plan sponsors in their role as strategic fiduciaries for their 401(k) plans.

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Social distancing generates recession

Social distancing generates recession

A recession is looming in the United States as COVID-19 and social distancing take a toll on economic activity.

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Manager insights: Bulls, bears, and bond markets

Manager insights: Bulls, bears, and bond markets

With the extreme swings in the market over the last few weeks, several of Putnam’s senior fixed-income managers shared their insights on the bond markets.

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Equity opportunities in challenging markets

Equity opportunities in challenging markets

Putnam’s equity investment professionals recently discussed market conditions, their strategies, and their outlooks.

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Recessions and the equity market:  A framework for investors

Recessions and the equity market: A framework for investors

In these days of significant market volatility, investors are looking for a framework.

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Stable value as an option for DC plans

Stable value as an option for DC plans

We outline key considerations for DC plan sponsors considering stable value funds as a capital preservation option.

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Manager insights on current volatility

Manager insights on current volatility

Putnam Investments hosted a webcast featuring insights on current volatility and the COVID-19 pandemic from three senior investment managers.

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The Fed reacts to coronavirus economic risks

The Fed reacts to coronavirus economic risks

The Fed made a proactive move to reduce the federal funds rate by 50 basis points.

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The impact of coronavirus on markets

The impact of coronavirus on markets

The spread of coronavirus infections is having an impact on China’s GDP and on financial market sentiment worldwide.

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The SECURE Act opens a new frontier for 401(k)s

The SECURE Act opens a new frontier for 401(k)s

The SECURE Act represents significant changes to retirement savings and could drive a expansion of workplace retirement savings plans including 401(k)s.

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Solutions to antibiotic resistance

Solutions to antibiotic resistance

As the focus on natural ingredients intensifies, so has concern about antibiotic use in food production.

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SECURE Act expands access to retirement plans

SECURE Act expands access to retirement plans

The SECURE Act of 2019 makes many changes to rules governing retirement savings including provisions to expand access to retirement plans.

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Millennial money drives 401(k) plan evolution

Millennial money drives 401(k) plan evolution

Growing in number, the Millennial generation is having an impact on the evolution of 401(k) plan design.

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Why stable value funds deserve a closer look

Why stable value funds deserve a closer look

Capital preservation strategies are not all alike, and plan sponsors need to carefully evaluate the options including money. market and stable value funds.

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Linking impact and performance

Linking impact and performance

Often, the same elements that create environmental and social benefits are driving positive financial performance.

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Engaging with allies to advance sustainable investing

Engaging with allies to advance sustainable investing

We collaborate with institutions to examine and understand the financial impacts of sustainability.

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To reduce employee stress, increase wellness

To reduce employee stress, increase wellness

By offering financial wellness programs in the workplace, employers may help employees reduce money-related stress.

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Talking sustainability with CEOs

Talking sustainability with CEOs

We have ongoing dialogue with the management teams of companies in which we invest, across a wide range of sustainability-related topics.

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The SECURE Act: Completing an unfinished masterpiece

The SECURE Act: Completing an unfinished masterpiece

Congress is considering the SECURE Act, which would enhance workplace retirement savings plans and extend access to millions of workers.

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Employers add student loan aid to retention toolkit

Employers add student loan aid to retention toolkit

College debt set a record high this year and many employers have added student loan aid to their benefit offerings to attract and retain workers.

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The 3 Rs of a retirement plan

The 3 Rs of a retirement plan

It is important to consider whether your retirement plan is on track to help meet the goals of retirement, recruitment, and retention.

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A success score for the 401(k)

A success score for the 401(k)

A traditional gauge of success for the 401(k) measures inputs, but companies also need to track outcomes to determine if a plan is successful.

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Actively targeting inflation risk for retirement savers

Actively targeting inflation risk for retirement savers

We explain why a dynamic approach to hedging inflation risk in a target-date fund may be a better way to protect a retirement nest egg.

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Investing for impact  |  Q&A with Stephanie Henderson

Investing for impact | Q&A with Stephanie Henderson

A member of Putnam's sustainable investing team describes her motivations for spreading ESG fluency throughout the firm to enhance fundamental insights.

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Market volatility returns to "old" normal

Market volatility returns to "old" normal

Our outlook for stock market volatility sees the levels reached in 2018 continuing, in part because these levels were close to the long-term norm.

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401(k) reaches milestone as innovation continues

401(k) reaches milestone as innovation continues

As the 401(k) reaches milestone, the workplace savings plan continues its evolution, adapting to changing demographics and savers’ needs.

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ESG Outlook for 2019

ESG Outlook for 2019

We see increasing evidence that systems thinking is becoming more prevalent and influential throughout corporations and the investment community.

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What November means for 2019

What November means for 2019

The events of November provide a fresh view of two key risks facing the economy in 2019 — a hawkish Fed and an escalation of the trade war.

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Bigger tax refunds may help boost retirement savings

Bigger tax refunds may help boost retirement savings

Projections of larger tax refunds this year could mean an increase in contributions to retirement savings.

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How company diversity can help performance

How company diversity can help performance

The potential to improve work performance is perhaps the most intriguing and least understood argument for diversity — and worth examining in more depth.

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Use wellness to gain wealth

Use wellness to gain wealth

New research found that a worker who focuses on wellness may save nearly $100,000 more for retirement than someone who does not manage their health well.

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October stock market volatility may signal a shift

October stock market volatility may signal a shift

Recent stock market volatility reflects a process of pricing in the fact that the global growth outlook has diverged.

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Calibrate equity allocations with higher savings rates

Calibrate equity allocations with higher savings rates

Evidence of higher savings rates by plan participants make it reasonable to consider lower equity allocations across the glide path of target-date funds.

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How to plan more rationally for longevity risk

How to plan more rationally for longevity risk

Longevity risk — the possibility outliving one's money in retirement — is a genuine risk, but data suggests that many people overestimate its likelihood.

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Retirement savings receive attention on Capitol Hill

Retirement savings receive attention on Capitol Hill

A number of bills to reform retirement savings are alive in the U.S. Congress this year.

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Shaping the curve in glide path design

Shaping the curve in glide path design

In designing an optimal glide path for a target date fund, it is critical to focus on portfolio size, investor time horizon, and volatility.

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Putting savers at the center of retirement plans

Putting savers at the center of retirement plans

In the past decade, investors have poured significant assets into target date funds, but savings in retirement vintages have been shrinking.

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Key risks to consider in glide path design

Key risks to consider in glide path design

Sequence risk is the key risk that target-date investment managers need to address along the glide path.

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Sustainable investing: Assessing the choices

Sustainable investing: Assessing the choices

Sustainable investing is growing in popularity, and investors should be thoughtful about choosing from a range of strategies and portfolios.

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HSAs may help workers save more for retirement

HSAs may help workers save more for retirement

Workers saving in both health savings accounts (HSAs) and 401(k) plans tend to save more in their 401(k).

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Are international stocks truly cheap?

Are international stocks truly cheap?

On the surface, U.S. stocks appear more expensive than international stocks, but a quantitative comparison reveals the impact of sector valuations.

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Health savings accounts could add to retirement wealth

Health savings accounts could add to retirement wealth

Educate employees about the advantages of a health savings accounts as a way to build flexible long-term assets.

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Just how cheap are European equities?

Just how cheap are European equities?

Our analysis finds that industry group weightings play a significant role in valuation discrepancies between U.S. and European equities.

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Are millennials with HSAs thinking about retirement?

Are millennials with HSAs thinking about retirement?

More millennials may contribute to health savings accounts in recent years, but they may not be aware of the potential to save for retirement.

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Looking for impact in CEO compensation

Looking for impact in CEO compensation

It’s important for investors to be able to understand how a company’s performance relates to CEO compensation.

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Longevity and medical costs – education for the great unknowns

Longevity and medical costs – education for the great unknowns

Understanding the impact of longevity and medical costs on savings requires education and a proactive approach to saving.

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Avoiding retirement savings shortfalls requires a team effort

Avoiding retirement savings shortfalls requires a team effort

Plan features, employer match, deferral rates, and investor education all work together to help participants avoid retirement savings shortfalls.

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Using and enhancing ESG investment data

Using and enhancing ESG investment data

ESG data is having investment impact but is still evolving, and stands to benefit from feedback offered by fundamental analysts.

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What motivates millennials to save for retirement?

What motivates millennials to save for retirement?

Recent surveys offer clues about retirement plan features and investment options that might motivate millennials to save more.

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Choosing an investing glide path to retirement

Choosing an investing glide path to retirement

When it comes to saving for retirement, a target-date fund offers a convenient feature — a glide path that systematically manages diversification.

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Are millennials missing out on retirement tax advantages?

Are millennials missing out on retirement tax advantages?

Millennials are saving at a higher rate than certain older generations, but may be missing out on the tax advantages of workplace savings plans.

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Why Brazil's crisis creates new concerns

Why Brazil's crisis creates new concerns

The revelations of May 17 may pose a threat to President Temer's administration, and therefore a threat to Brazil's short- and medium-term economic outlook.

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Why rates matter to stocks, too

Why rates matter to stocks, too

Risk factor analysis shows that equity market sectors that act like “bond proxies” may be more sensitive to changes in interest rates than bonds themselves.

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See the dove in the Fed's dot plot

See the dove in the Fed's dot plot

The market sees a more hawkish Fed in the December 2016 rate hike, but we see see signs of a dove in the Fed's dot plot.

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Watch the euro as Italy votes

Watch the euro as Italy votes

We are watching the referendum in Italy this weekend for yet another existential crisis for the euro.

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Diversifying stable value with traditional GICs

Diversifying stable value with traditional GICs

Stable value portfolios that avoid traditional GICs may be missing a diversification opportunity that also offers liquidity.

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Italy's bank troubles challenge EU

Italy's bank troubles challenge EU

Troubled banks in Italy pose a new challenge to the EU, one that has been compounded by the U.K.'s vote in favor of Brexit.

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Fed downshifts on pace of rate hikes

Fed downshifts on pace of rate hikes

The Fed's “dot plot” in March, representing individual forecasts by 17 Fed policymakers, showed a reduction in the number of rate hikes for 2016.

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Dividends rose in 2015 despite volatility

Dividends rose in 2015 despite volatility

A majority of the companies in the S&P 500 Index have increased their dividend each year for several years running.

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Navigating rates as the Fed steers a course

Navigating rates as the Fed steers a course

With the Fed embarked on a cycle of interest rate increases, investors face a challenge to navigate rates in their fixed-income portfolios.

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Don’t underestimate this economy

Don’t underestimate this economy

Despite worrisome headlines about the economy, recent data show only a modest loss of momentum.

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Constrained credit threatens growth

Constrained credit threatens growth

Stock market rallies often need to climb a wall of worry, and we see that wall getting higher.

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How alts have performed in the long run

How alts have performed in the long run

Comparing the long-term returns and volatility of alternative investments can provide clues on their potential for diversifying a portfolio.

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The fixed-income risks that we favor

The fixed-income risks that we favor

We see more attractive fixed income risks outside of interest rates, in part because U.S. economic growth may warrant more rate hikes by the Fed.

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Value opportunities gain traction in turmoil

Value opportunities gain traction in turmoil

Beneath dire headlines about plunging markets, we are seeing value opportunities assert themselves.

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Shedding light on alternatives

Shedding light on alternatives

Classifying alternative investment strategies by objective can help to illuminate the benefits they offer to portfolio diversification.

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The views and opinions expressed are those of the speaker, are subject to change with market conditions, and are not meant as investment advice.