Morgan Stanley Wealth Management is the trade name of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC, a registered broker-dealer in the United States. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only and is not an offer to buy or sell or a solicitation of any offer to buy or sell any security or other financial instrument or to participate in any trading strategy. Past performance is not necessarily a guide to future performance. Please refer to important information, disclosures and qualifications at the end of this material.
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The committee determines the investment outlook that guides our advice to clients. They continually monitor developing economic and market conditions, review tactical outlooks and recommend asset allocation model weightings, as well as produce a suite of strategy, analysis, commentary, portfolio positioning suggestions and other reports and broadcasts.
For index, indicator and survey definitions referenced in this report please visit the following: https://www.morganstanley.com/wealthinvestmentsolutions/wmir-definitions
Asset Class Risk Considerations
Equity securities may fluctuate in response to news on companies, industries, market conditions and general economic environment.
Bonds are subject to interest rate risk. When interest rates rise, bond prices fall; generally the longer a bond's maturity, the more sensitive it is to this risk. Bonds may also be subject to call risk, which is the risk that the issuer will redeem the debt at its option, fully or partially, before the scheduled maturity date. The market value of debt instruments may fluctuate, and proceeds from sales prior to maturity may be more or less than the amount originally invested or the maturity value due to changes in market conditions or changes in the credit quality of the issuer. Bonds are subject to the credit risk of the issuer. This is the risk that the issuer might be unable to make interest and/or principal payments on a timely basis. Bonds are also subject to reinvestment risk, which is the risk that principal and/or interest payments from a given investment may be reinvested at a lower interest rate.
Bonds rated below investment grade may have speculative characteristics and present significant risks beyond those of other securities, including greater credit risk and price volatility in the secondary market. Investors should be careful to consider these risks alongside their individual circumstances, objectives and risk tolerance before investing in high-yield bonds. High yield bonds should comprise only a limited portion of a balanced portfolio.
Treasury Inflation Protection Securities’ (TIPS) coupon payments and underlying principal are automatically increased to compensate for inflation by tracking the consumer price index (CPI). While the real rate of return is guaranteed, TIPS tend to offer a low return. Because the return of TIPS is linked to inflation, TIPS may significantly underperform versus conventional U.S. Treasuries in times of low inflation.
The majority of $25 and $1000 par preferred securities are “callable” meaning that the issuer may retire the securities at specific prices and dates prior to maturity. Interest/dividend payments on certain preferred issues may be deferred by the issuer for periods of up to 5 to 10 years, depending on the particular issue. The investor would still have income tax liability even though payments would not have been received. Price quoted is per $25 or $1,000 share, unless otherwise specified. Current yield is calculated by multiplying the coupon by par value divided by the market price.
Some $25 or $1000 par preferred securities are QDI (Qualified Dividend Income) eligible. Information on QDI eligibility is obtained from third party sources. The dividend income on QDI eligible preferreds qualifies for a reduced tax rate. Many traditional ‘dividend paying’ perpetual preferred securities (traditional preferreds with no maturity date) are QDI eligible. In order to qualify for the preferential tax treatment all qualifying preferred securities must be held by investors for a minimum period – 91 days during a 180 day window period, beginning 90 days before the ex-dividend date.
Yields are subject to change with economic conditions. Yield is only one factor that should be considered when making an investment decision.
Duration, the most commonly used measure of bond risk, quantifies the effect of changes in interest rates on the price of a bond or bond portfolio. The longer the duration, the more sensitive the bond or portfolio would be to changes in interest rates. Generally, if interest rates rise, bond prices fall and vice versa. Longer-term bonds carry a longer or higher duration than shorter-term bonds; as such, they would be affected by changing interest rates for a greater period of time if interest rates were to increase. Consequently, the price of a long-term bond would drop significantly as compared to the price of a short-term bond.
Principal is returned on a monthly basis over the life of a mortgage-backed security. Principal prepayment can significantly affect the monthly income stream and the maturity of any type of MBS, including standard MBS, CMOs and Lottery Bonds. Yields and average lives are estimated based on prepayment assumptions and are subject to change based on actual prepayment of the mortgages in the underlying pools. The level of predictability of an MBS/CMO’s average life, and its market price, depends on the type of MBS/CMO class purchased and interest rate movements. In general, as interest rates fall, prepayment speeds are likely to increase, thus shortening the MBS/CMO’s average life and likely causing its market price to rise. Conversely, as interest rates rise, prepayment speeds are likely to decrease, thus lengthening average life and likely causing the MBS/CMO’s market price to fall. Some MBS/CMOs may have “original issue discount” (OID). OID occurs if the MBS/CMO’s original issue price is below its stated redemption price at maturity, and results in “imputed interest” that must be reported annually for tax purposes, resulting in a tax liability even though interest was not received. Investors are urged to consult their tax advisors for more information.
Physical precious metals are non-regulated products. Precious metals are speculative investments, which may experience short-term and long-term price volatility. The value of precious metals investments may fluctuate and may appreciate or decline, depending on market conditions. If sold in a declining market, the price you receive may be less than your original investment. Unlike bonds and stocks, precious metals do not make interest or dividend payments. Therefore, precious metals may not be appropriate for investors who require current income. Precious metals are commodities that should be safely stored, which may impose additional costs on the investor. The Securities Investor Protection Corporation (“SIPC”) provides certain protection for customers’ cash and securities in the event of a brokerage firm’s bankruptcy, other financial difficulties, or if customers’ assets are missing. SIPC insurance does not apply to precious metals or other commodities.
An investment in an exchange-traded fund involves risks similar to those of investing in a broadly based portfolio of equity securities traded on an exchange in the relevant securities market, such as market fluctuations caused by such factors as economic and political developments, changes in interest rates and perceived trends in stock and bond prices. Investing in an international ETF also involves certain risks and considerations not typically associated with investing in an ETF that invests in the securities of U.S. issues, such as political, currency, economic and market risks. These risks are magnified in countries with emerging markets, since these countries may have relatively unstable governments and less established markets and economics. ETFs investing in physical commodities and commodity or currency futures have special tax considerations. Physical commodities may be treated as collectibles subject to a maximum 28% long-term capital gains rates, while futures are marked-to-market and may be subject to a blended 60% long- and 40% short-term capital gains tax rate. Rolling futures positions may create taxable events. For specifics and a greater explanation of possible risks with ETFs¸ along with the ETF’s investment objectives, charges and expenses, please consult a copy of the ETF’s prospectus. Investing in sectors may be more volatile than diversifying across many industries. The investment return and principal value of ETF investments will fluctuate, so an investor’s ETF shares (Creation Units), if or when sold, may be worth more or less than the original cost. ETFs are redeemable only in Creation Unit size through an Authorized Participant and are not individually redeemable from an ETF.
Because of their narrow focus, sector investments tend to be more volatile than investments that diversify across many sectors and companies. Technology stocks may be especially volatile. Risks applicable to companies in the energy and natural resources sectors include commodity pricing risk, supply and demand risk, depletion risk and exploration risk. Health care sector stocks are subject to government regulation, as well as government approval of products and services, which can significantly impact price and availability, and which can also be significantly affected by rapid obsolescence and patent expirations.
The returns on a portfolio consisting primarily of environmental, social, and governance-aware investments (ESG) may be lower or higher than a portfolio that is more diversified or where decisions are based solely on investment considerations. Because ESG criteria exclude some investments, investors may not be able to take advantage of the same opportunities or market trends as investors that do not use such criteria.
Asset allocation and diversification do not assure a profit or protect against loss in declining financial markets.
Growth investing does not guarantee a profit or eliminate risk. The stocks of these companies can have relatively high valuations. Because of these high valuations, an investment in a growth stock can be more risky than an investment in a company with more modest growth expectations.
Value investing does not guarantee a profit or eliminate risk. Not all companies whose stocks are considered to be value stocks are able to turn their business around or successfully employ corrective strategies which would result in stock prices that do not rise as initially expected.
Rebalancing does not protect against a loss in declining financial markets. There may be a potential tax implication with a rebalancing strategy. Investors should consult with their tax advisor before implementing such a strategy.
The indices are unmanaged. An investor cannot invest directly in an index. They are shown for illustrative purposes only and do not represent the performance of any specific investment.
The indices selected by Morgan Stanley Wealth Management to measure performance are representative of broad asset classes. Morgan Stanley Wealth Management retains the right to change representative indices at any time.
Morgan Stanley Wealth Management is the trade name of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC, a registered broker-dealer in the United States.
This material has been prepared for informational purposes only and is not an offer to buy or sell or a solicitation of any offer to buy or sell any security or other financial instrument or to participate in any trading strategy. Past performance is not necessarily a guide to future performance. The securities/instruments discussed in this material may not be appropriate for all investors. The appropriateness of a particular investment or strategy will depend on an investor’s individual circumstances and objectives. Morgan Stanley Wealth Management recommends that investors independently evaluate specific investments and strategies, and encourages investors to seek the advice of a financial advisor.
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