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It is all too easy to forget that the markets are in a peculiar state. For example, nominal yields on US 10-year Treasuries have trended downwards since 1981. Real interest rates – that is, adjusted for inflation – have also trended downwards from about the same time. Estimates vary but there are also many trillions of euros worth of negative yielding debt.
- Special Report
The protracted period of ultra-low interest rates in the developed world could have a nasty knock-on effect on emerging market debt
By his own account Nico Marais is an extraordinarily lucky man. The CEO of Wells Fargo Asset Management (WFAM) is keen to use every opportunity to emphasise his good fortune. In Marais’s modest telling of his own story, his success is thanks to the qualities of others, rather than to his own merits. “It’s the story of my life. I’ve just always worked for amazing people,” he says.
The remarkable reversal in the outlook for official interest rates over the past few months has received relatively little attention. Until recently it was widely accepted that rates could only move upwards. It looked almost certain that quantitative tightening (QT) would supplant quantitative easing (QE). Now the balance has reverted to further monetary accommodation.