Most investors we talk to say they do not want to make a “currency call,” then default to being unhedged in their investments, making the implicit call that the dollar is going to forever decline. Jeremy Schwartz makes the case for currency hedging your international portfolio.
It wasn’t that long ago that we were experiencing a spectacular degree of dollar strength in 2014 and 2015. We have been focused on helping investors better understand the drivers behind different currency movements, and this post examines both valuation and economic growth indicators.
As we seek to understand movements of the U.S. dollar, we’ve noticed three big-picture factors that come up time and again: inflation, elections and policy. Christopher Gannatti evaluates each of these in turn.
After depreciating in 2017, the U.S. dollar recently has reversed this trend and rallied more than 5% since February. If the dollar continues to strengthen, investors may want to consider small caps for their U.S. equity portfolio.
Jeremy J Siegel
Senior Investment Strategy Advisor
CEO of WisdomTree
Jeremy Schwartz, CFA
Executive Vice President, Global Head of Research
Christopher Gannatti, CFA
Head of Research, Europe
Christopher Gannatti began at WisdomTree as a Research Analyst in December 2010, working directly with Jeremy Schwartz, CFA®, Director of Research. In January of 2014, he was promoted to Associate Director of Research where he was responsible to lead different groups of analysts and strategists within the broader Research team at WisdomTree. In February of 2018, Christopher was promoted to Head of Research, Europe, where he will be based out of WisdomTree’s London office and will be responsible for the full WisdomTree research effort within the European market, as well as supporting the UCITs platform globally. Christopher came to WisdomTree from Lord Abbett, where he worked for four and a half years as a Regional Consultant. He received his MBA in Quantitative Finance, Accounting, and Economics from NYU’s Stern School of Business in 2010, and he received his bachelor’s degree from Colgate University in Economics in 2006. Christopher is a holder of the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.
Head of Fixed Income Strategy
Tripp Zimmerman, CFA
Head of Fixed Income & Currency
Associate Director, Asset Allocation and Modern Alpha
Head of Capital Markets
Associate Director of Capital Markets
Head of Europe
Joseph Tenaglia, CFA
Associate Director, Asset Allocation
Jianing Wu joined WisdomTree as a Research Analyst in October 2018. She is responsible for analyzing market trends and helping support WisdomTree’s research efforts. Previously, Jianing completed internships and projects at Geode Capital, Starwint Capital, and Invesco Great Wall Fund Management with a focus in quantitative research. Jianing received her M.S in Finance from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She graduated with honors from Boston College with degrees in Mathematics and Philosophy.
Jeff Weniger, CFA
Director, Asset Allocation
Alejandro Saltiel, CFA
Associate Director of Modern Alpha
Alejandro Saltiel joined WisdomTree as a Quantitative Research Analyst in May 2017. He is responsible for quantitative research on WisdomTree’s products and global equity markets. Prior to joining WisdomTree, Alejandro worked at HSBC Asset Management’s Mexico City office as Portfolio Manager for multi-asset mutual funds. He started his career working at a boutique hedge fund that specialized on trading options on sector-levered ETFs. Alejandro received his Master’s in Financial Engineering degree from Columbia University in 2017 and a Bachelor’s in Engineering degree from the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM) in 2010. He is a holder of the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.
Matt Wagner, CFA
Modern Alpha Analyst
Matt Wagner joined WisdomTree in May 2017 as a member of the Research team. He is responsible for research on WisdomTree’s products and communicating the firm’s views on the markets. Matt started his career at Morgan Stanley, working as an analyst in Treasury Capital Markets from 2015 to 2017 where he focused on unsecured funding planning, execution and risk management. Matt graduated from Boston College in 2015 with a B.A. in International Studies with a concentration in Economics. Matt is a holder of the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.
Investment Strategy Analyst
Brian Manby joined WisdomTree in October 2018 as an Investment Strategy Analyst. He is responsible for assisting in the creation and analysis of WisdomTree’s model portfolios, as well as helping support the firm’s research efforts. Prior to joining WisdomTree, he worked for FactSet Research Systems, Inc. as a Senior Consultant, where he assisted clients in the creation, maintenance and support of FactSet products in the investment management workflow. Brian received a B.A. as a dual major in Economics and Political Science from the University of Connecticut in 2016, and is pursuing the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.
Kara Marciscano, CFA
Quantitative Research Analyst
Last week, Professor Siegel and I chat with Marc Chandler, Head of Global Markets Strategy at Brown Brothers Harriman, about his views on divergent central bank policy actions, implications for the U.S. dollar, euro and yen, as well as his thoughts regarding emerging markets.
At WisdomTree, we continue to believe one of the most important themes impacting the global markets has been the strengthening U.S. dollar—and this is a trend we expect to continue for some time.
Last week Professor Jeremy Siegel and I spoke with Bill Stone, Executive Vice President and Chief Investment Strategist of PNC Institutional Asset Management, and James Wood-Collins, CEO of Record Currency Management, about their outlook on the markets, diverging central bank policies and the role of currency in portfolios.
With other major central banks easing and the Fed looking to hike rates, the U.S. dollar strengthened broadly. In fact, the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index (BBDXY) recently powered through the previous cycle highs of March 2015. With the trend in dollar appreciation potentially resuming, where are markets likely to head next?
Given the higher cost of currency hedging in emerging markets, WisdomTree sought to mitigate the risk of currency depreciation against the U.S. dollar through the Index construction process.