Recently, we attended a panel discussion at the Japan Society entitled “The Sun Also Rises?: Japan’s Potential in the Post-Crisis Global Economy.” The discussion was compelling and offered some of the most bullish and optimistic arguments we have heard in favor of looking at Japan today.
Japanese equities have been among the best performing global markets since late 2012.1 The depreciation of the yen and the rise in equity prices have been widely noted. But looking under the hood, we’ve noticed another important change occurring in Japan.
Since reaching historic lows in mid-January, Japanese government bond (JGB)yields have doubled over the last several weeks. In the process, they have eclipsed German 10-year bund yields for the first time in over 20 years.
With a majority of developed markets rallying strongly over the last several years, we think the single biggest determinant for investors actually being able to capture those returns has hinged on their ability to manage currency risk.