Sterling Corporate Bond Strategy

Sterling Corporate Bond Strategy

Sterling Corporate Bond Strategy


The Sterling Corporate Bond Strategy is a value-oriented fixed income strategy that seeks attractive total returns from income and price appreciation by investing primarily in sterling-denominated debt and non-gilt fixed income securities issued by corporations and non-government related issuers. To help achieve this objective, the strategy combines a top-down macroeconomic assessment, to determine optimal beta positioning for the portfolio, with rigorous bottom-up fundamental analysis.

Investment Approach

The investment team believes that market participants may often mis-value a company’s default risk, resulting in bond prices that fail to reflect the true credit profile of a company. However, the team believes that the market, over time, will re-value the bond prices of high-quality issuers based on an improving credit profile, thereby offering investors in undervalued, high-quality issuers, the opportunity to potentially exploit these pricing inefficiencies and earn superior returns over the long term. 

The team believes that successful credit management depends on four factors: 

- A value-driven process

- Forward-looking credit analysis

- Broad diversification to help reduce portfolio risk

- A global approach


Combined quantitative and qualitative investment approach:

The team’s investment approach integrates strong qualitative analysis with robust quantitative valuation tools at every stage of the investment process, providing a robust credit management process.

Extensive experience:

The Global Fixed Income Team at Morgan Stanley Investment Management has invested in fixed income assets since 1975, and in European fixed income assets since 1990

Global research:

The Global Fixed Income Team at Morgan Stanley Investment Management has invested in fixed income assets since 1975, and in European fixed income assets since 1990.

Investment Process
Macro Analysis:

The process begins with a top-down value assessment of the corporate bond universe, including a consideration of macroeconomic conditions, the corporate earnings environment and relative valuations.


The team applies what they believe to be a unique combination of quantitative and qualitative filters to identify approximately 250 to 300 bond issuers that meet its investment criteria in terms of competitive position, franchise value and management quality. 

Credit Analysis:

The team conducts rigorous credit analysis that narrows that universe to approximately 200 investment candidates.

Valuation Analysis:

Using default data and average risk premia, the team derives a fair value spread for each bond, that is compared to the market spread to determine a bond’s under/overvaluation.

Portfolio Construction:

A portfolio of 75 to 100 issuers is constructed, with sector allocation driven primarily from bottom-up security selection (subject to our risk management guidelines). 

Portfolio Managers  
Richard Ford
Richard Ford
Co-Head, Broad Markets Fixed Income
33 years industry experience
Dipen Patel
Dipen Patel
Executive Director
15 years industry experience








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